IN A REPLY TO SOME EXCEPTIONS against WAR, in a late COMPOSURE, intituled, The Doctrine of Christianity, as held by the People called QUAKERS, vindicated.


Judges vi. 14.16.3 [...].

And the Lord looked upon him, and said, Go in this thy [...]ight, and thou shalt save Israel from the Hand of the Midianites: Have not I sent thee? Surely I will be with thee, and thou shalt smite the Midianites as one Man. The Spirit of the Lord came upon Gideon, and he blew a Trumpet, and Abiezer was gathered after him.

Psalm cxlix. 5, 6.

Let the Saints be joyful in Glory: Let the high Praises of God be in their Mouth, and a two-edged Sword in their Hand.

Matthew xxiv. 43.

But know this, that if the Good-man of the House had known, in what [...]atch the Th [...]ef would come, he would have watche [...] and would not have suffered his House to be broken up.

PHILADELPHIA: Printed and Sold by B. FRANKLIN and D. HALL. MDCCXLVIII. Price 2s. 6d.



Page 11. Line 1. dele the. p. 14. l. 18. for Scriptures read Scripture. p. 16. l. 33. for [...]ermnon read Sermon. p. 78 l. 36. for descenderet read descende­rat. p. 79. l. 29. for uhappy read unhappy. p. 93. l. 20. for 1 John xviii. 2. read 1 John i. 8. p. 93. l. 31. for Mileu read Milev. p. 108. [...]. 4. for given read given up. p. 121. l. 22. for [...]ect read Sect. p. 123. l. 35. for dolet in a few Copies read docet. p. 115. l. 20. for fram read from. p. 122. l. 27. for utigne in a few Copies read ut igne. p. 131. l. 25. for Lauren­tius read Laurentinus. p. 163. l. 31. dele [...]. p. 168. l. 2. for defere [...]dum read deferendum.

[Page iii]


Honoured Gentlemen, and dear Brethren,

I BEG Leave to offer the following Reply to you in par­ticular, and humbly ask your kind Acceptanc [...] of it: I may truly say, that the being engag'd in a Controversy of this Kind, is one of the most unexpected Events to me that ever I met with: 'Tis not long since that I had almost come to a full Resolution, never more to offer any Production of mine to publick View; being somewhat sensible of my Unfitness for Things of that Nature, and likewise desirous of Peace!

But the All-governing Providence of God, sometimes brings about Things in a Way we know not, by a surprizing Train of Incidents!

My appearing in Publick, by the first Discourse upon Defen­sive War, which some of you were pleased to honour by your Presence, was not of my own Motion or Seeking, but what a little before I had almost determined against; having an Aver­sion to Controversy, which I knew not but it might occasion: In the mean Time, you are sensible Sirs, that in the aforesaid Discourse, I endeavour'd carefully to guard against giving Cause of Offence to particular Persons or Societies, that were of dif­ferent Sentiments; and only offered some of the Reasons of my Opinion, together with an Answer to some Objections.

That Discourse, Gentlemen, you were pleas'd (some of you) to encourage the Publication of; which, as it was an Evidence of your Regard to the Design of the Performance in general, so of your Kindness and Indulgence to me in Particular; for which I acknowledge my Obligation!

The aforesaid Sermon, as you all know, has been since oppo­sed from the Press, and that under the Umbrage of vindicating the Doctrine of a particular Society, which I had not attacked; this Composure I have carefully examined, and deliberately con­sidered, and not being thereby convinced of any Mistake in my Sermon; I think it my Duty (tho' I am not comperatively par negotio equal to the Province) to defend it; and the rather at this Time, because I do not only look upon Defensive War to be an important Truth, as it respects Society in general, but a very seasonable Truth, considering our perilous Circumstances in Particular; and because in this Debate, I am upon the Defensive, and therefore do but act agreeable to the Position advanced in the Sermon.

[Page iv]I cannot say that I have manag'd it as the Moment of the Subject deserves, and its Necessity requires; but I can s [...]y, that I have attempted it, and this is my Comfort, that (In magnis voluisse sat est) in great and arduous Matters, an honest Essay is acceptable to a gracious God, thro' Jesus Christ, and will not be disagreeable to ingenuous and unbyassed Minds.

And perhaps this humble Essay, this small Specimen of my good Wishes for the Defence of labouring [...]ruth, and an endan­ger'd City and Colony, may incite some abler Pen to pour more Light upon the Point in Controversy, which would doubtle [...]s be of singular Service.

But tho' I may safely say that my Heart is engaged in the Subject of the following Pages, with Design to promote the Safety of this (but lately) defenceless Province, yet I bless God I bear a friendly Disposition towards those who have a d [...]fferent View of the Point in Debate; and have a cha [...]itable Opinion of the good Intention, at least of divers of them, notwithstand­ing.

And this, my dear Brethren! I would humbly advise you all to exercise; Charity thinks no Evil, but hopeth all Things — Altho' the Point appears clear to us, yet considering the great and secret Influence of Education, upon the most of Mankind, and the Number of Scripture Passages, which seem to have a Sound contrary to War, in Gospel Times; it is not to be won­dered at, that some serious and well-dispos'd Minds, are scru­pulous of it, or averse to it; and surely it is cruel to persecute them, for what they cannot help, yea, for that which doubt­less they have a good Design in!

But if there be any, who are in their Consciences convinced of the Lawfulness of Defensive War, yet dare not appear for it, for Fear of the Displeasure of Men, certainly it is no good Sign ei­ther of their Piety or Courage.

I would humbly ask of Readers in general, of every Deno­mination, who shall be pleased to look into the following Per­formance, this Act of Justice to me, and Favour to themselves, namely, That they would examine impartially, and weigh, without the Byas of Prepossession and Prejudice, what I have of­fered in the Scales of Scripture and Reason; for seeing Truth will not bend to our irregular Passions, it is best by calm and candid Enquiri [...]s, to labour to find it out amidst the Mazes and Colourings of Error and Mistake; and having found it, would we act up to the Character of Men and Christians, we should profess it boldly, and conform to it inviolably in our Conduct at all Adventures! I am,

Honoured Gentlemen, and dear Brethren,
Your affectionate Wellwisher, and unworthy Servant, GILBERT TENNENT.
[Page 1]

Defensive War Defended, &c.


PREVIOUS to my Entrance upon the Vindication itself, I would observe, that I have credible Information, that that Perfor­mance is highly recommended by many; and has had, a few Days after the first, a second Edition.

The Gentleman who is the Author thereof, is wel­come to examine my Sermon with the severest Scrutiny.

If I am mistaken in any Particular in it, I am willing to receive better Light and Information from any Quarter, * and to alter my Opinion upon Con­viction by Scripture and Reason; for it is TRUTH and the PUBLICK SAFETY, and not Victory, I seek.

And doubtless, the aforesaid Gentleman has a Right to express his Sentiments as well as any others: Nor can I think that Truth will lose Ground by proper Enquiries; we are all Men, and therefore fallible Creatures, liable to manifold Mistakes.

In the mean Time I can't but admire at the Title of his Performance! He is pleas'd to call it, A Vin­dication of the Doctrine of Christianity; as held by the People called QUAKERS; which seems to insinu­ate, that I had attack'd that Society in particular in my Sermon, which I have not done, nor any other.

[Page 2]I had no Party-View in that Discourse: No! my Design was, and still is Catholick; namely, to pro­mote, according to my Capacity, * the common Safety of all the Societies in the Colony; and there­fore I will not intermeddle with Party-Disputes in the Course of this Debate, any farther than I judge necessary to open the Cause in Controversy, whatever Provocation has been given thereto notwithstand­ing: No! I resolve to keep to the generous Plan upon which I have embark'd, and to contend by Reason and Argument, for the Protection of our Author, and the Society to which he belongs, as well as others, how displeas'd soever perhaps he is, or may be, with my Concern and Endeavours that Way!

Surely this Gentleman must needs know, that there are divers Persons in this Colony, and that of vari­ous Denominations, besides the Quakers, who are a­gainst Defensive War, as well as many of them? Why therefore should he apply the Sermon to them parti­cularly, more than to others of the same Way of thinking in that Point?

When I think it my Duty to attack any Society in particular about their Principles, I will endeavour to defend my Charge as well as I can; but till then, I desire to be excus'd.

As to this Gentleman's Intention in the Perfor­mance aforesaid, I charitably hope it is as he expres­ses it in his Preface. God forbid that I should con­demn the States and Designs of thos [...] that differ from me in the Point under Debate; such as are truly Re­ligious, may, I believe, differ in Principles that more deeply affect the Doctrines of Christianity, and yet be sincere!

However, I confess, that the Time he chuses for his publick Animad [...]ersions upon a Catholick Sermon, calculated to promote the publick Safety, is so peril­ous, [Page 3] and the Manner of his Management, in some Instances, so extraordinary (as I shall afterwards en­deavour to evince) that it is somewhat difficult to reconcile these Things to his good Intentions!

One wou'd think that if he didn't believe it to be his Duty to do any Thing of an encouraging Ten­dency towards the noble Design of the ASSOCI­ATION himself, he might at least suffer others unoppos'd, to use Means for the Protection of him and the Society to which he belongs, among others; and for a longer Time at least, agreeable to the Ro­man Proverb have suspended his entering into an offensive War—Yet still I hope the best of him, and ascribe his odd Management rather to the Difficulty of supporting his Cause, and the Warmth of his Zeal for it, than to any bad Design!

My Purpose at present is to enquire into the Me­rits of the Cause in Controversy, and to reflect no more upon our Author's Management of it (and that with Reluctance and Regret) than Justice to the aforesaid important Cause necessarily requires.

Personal Reflections are certainly of little Mo­ment in Controversy: Truth should be received for its own sake, with Candour and Readiness, by whomsoever it is proposed, let their Denomination and Character be what it will, seeing the Qualities of the Person speaking or writing, cannot enter in­to the Nature of the Truths they communicate, or in the least alter them.

The Method I propose for my Reply, is just to examine the Force of the Objections offered against the Arguments of my Sermon.

Our Author begins his Animadversions, by obser­ving that the Deliverance to which my Text refers, was miraculous—wrought without any human Con­trivance or Force.

[Page 4] Ans. Who has said any Thing to the Contrary? It was not from any Supposition of Israel's fighting, at that Time (tho' they were prepared for it, and under Arms) that I drew any Inference in Favour of my Sentiment; but from the FIGHTING of Israel's GOD, and the just TITLE ascrib'd to him on that Occasion, The LORD is a MAN of WAR.

Our Author again observes very justly, that the Command to Israel, when closely pursued by their Enemies, was, Fear ye not, stand still, and see the Salvation of God, the Lord shall fight for you: But wasn't there good Reason for their Standing still, when God promised to fight for them in a miracu­lous Manner? Mr. Poole observes, that the Com­mand of standing still, denotes the calm Posture of their Minds, and not of their Bodies §: But if any incline to extend the Sense further, even to the Bo­dy, I shall not contend; no, tho' they themselves should conform thereto in their own Practice, pro­vided they can get a Promise from God, that he will fight miraculously for them.

But by the by, I confess I am surpriz'd! that a­ny of the Children of Men, should be so bold, as to represent that to be Evil in itself, and absolutely for­bid by the Doctrines of Christ, which they may easi­ly perceive God himself has done, The Lord shall fight for you, Exod. xiv. 13. as if it was wicked and contrary to the Gospel to be like God; O strange unaccountable Notion! I forbear to give it the Name, which, in my Opinion, it really deserves!

But our Author proceeds to say, ‘Tho' some Wars were commanded of God, under that Dis­pensation, and therefore these Appellations, A Man of War, the Lord of Hosts, &c. were then suit­able and proper, yet I cannot, saith he, perceive that they discover any Approbation of War, be­gun [Page 5] and carried on at the mere Will and Pleasure of Men, I rather take them to denote the Great­ness of his Power and Superiority, and therefore the Justness and Propriety of an entire Dependance upon God. And then the Case of Gideon is intro­duced, who at the Command of God, reduced his Army from 32,000 to 300, and put the mighty Host of the Midianites to Flight; ‘Here (says our Author) tho' the Use of outward Means was per­mitted, a strong and entire Dependance upon God was required, even in that Day: Can such a Dependance be less necessary in a Day of Gospel Light?’

Here observe, that our Author acknowledges ex­presly, in the above Paragraph, these three Things, viz.

  • 1. That some Wars were commanded by God, under the Jewish [...]ispensation.
  • 2. That the aforesaid Appellations of Man of War, &c. were suitable and proper then.
  • 3. That tho' the Use of outward Means was per­mitted, a strong and entire Dependance upon God was required even in that Day.

Upon the aforesaid Concessions, I would propose the following Queries, viz.

Query 1, Can it be reasonably supposed that the Almighty can command at any Time what is contra­ry to his Nature or Approbation?

Query 2. Is the Almighty God changed now in his Nature and Properties, from what he was under the Jewish Dispensation? Doesn't the Scripture de­clare, That He is far from the Shadow of Change? Now if the Almighty does not, cannot change, in the aforesaid Respects, then I query,

3. How comes our Author, Page 3, 4. after he had mentioned my Endeavour to prove from my Text, and some other Appellations given to the Al­mighty [Page 6] in the Old Testament, viz, The Lord of Hosts, The God of the Armies of Israel, &c. to prove from thence that War was agreeable to him, to insert under the Margin this Text, Lam. iii. 33. The Lord doth not afflict willingly, nor grieve the Children of Men; if it be not to prove a Change in God's Nature, is it not impertinent to the Point un­der Debate? And if it be, how shocking is the Doc­trine our Author advances? For if God changes in his Nature, he must grow better or worse; if better, he was imperfect before the Change; if worse, he is imperfect after it; and consequently either Way he cannot be God!.

Query 4. How comes our Author to pass by in entire Silence the Argument I advanced in the Ser­mon he opposes, to prove that War is approved of by the Almighty, which is this (Page 6) ‘And can we think Sirs, that the Almighty would ac­cept of a Name contrary to his Nature, or suffer himself to be called by any Thing he dislikes or detests?’ If our Author thinks that Defensive War is contrary to the Divine Nature, why didn't he answer that Question in the Negative, and speak out fairly?

Query 5. Why does our Author in the aforesaid Paragraph change the State of the Question, and speak of a War begun and pursued at the meer Plea­sure and Will of Men? Have I not in stating the Question under Debate, expresly opposed such a wicked offensive War, in these Words; (Page 6, 7) ‘That Kind of War is not approved of by God, which is commenced merely to gratify the Ambi­tion and Avarice of Princes—Such Wars are un­doubtedly unlawful; and likewise all such as are begun without a View to Justice and Peace, and carried on without Compassion and Humanity. Is this candid Management? But I proceed:

[Page 7] Query 6. Why does our Author, in the aforesaid Paragraph, in order to remove the Force of my Argument from the aforesaid Appellation (mention'd to prove God's Approbation of War) insinuate some Contrariety between God's Approbation of War, and his Greatness, Power, Superiority, Sufficiency, and our Dependance on him: If such a Contrariety be not in­sinuated, how is his Gloss supported? And if it be, how can it be prov'd contrary to the express Com­mand of the Almighty for War at that Time? Isn't it easy to conceive a sweet Harmony in these Things? namely, God's being entitled a Man of War; his commanding Defensive War; his approving what he commands; his presiding over all Wars, by his Power and Providence, and therefore a Necessity of our entire and continual Dependance upon him, in the Use of Means for Success.

Query 7. What does our Author bring the In­stance of Gideon for? Is it to prove what no Body denies, namely, the Almighty Power of God; the Necessity of entire Dependance on God, in the Use of Means; if so, it is impertinent to the Point in Debate, and unkind Dealing; for it insinuates, that such as are now for Defensive War, question the Pow­er of God, and oppose an entire Dependance upon his Providence. This Insinuation he farther manifests in the Close of the aforesaid Paragraph, in these Words, ‘Can such a Dependance be less necessary in a Day of Gospel-Light?’

Now that such an Insinuation is unreasonable, ap­pears from his own Concession beforementioned, whereby he acknowledges a Permission of the out­ward Means (viz. of War) and yet that a strong and entire Dependance upon God was at the same Time requir'd. Well, if both these Things were requir'd and consistent then, why not now?

[Page 8]Farther: That the aforesaid Insinuation is unjust, appears from the following Paragraph of the Sermon which he opposes, Page 39; ‘But, Sirs, allow me to observe, that tho' outward Means are necessary and excellent in their Place, yet they are not like to be crown'd with Success, except we look above them to God for Direction and Assistance; except we repent of our Sins, and reform our Lives!

But if our Author brings the Instance of Gideon to prove that the Mean of War is not at Times ne­cessary or requir'd by the Almighty, he contradicts what he acknowledges, and opposes the Instance he produces: For tho' Gideon, by God's Command, reduc'd his Army to a small Number, yet i [...] didn't reduce the Number to nothing; and with that small Number that remain'd, he us'd diverse Stratagems to obtain Victory; he divided it into three Battalions to make the greater Appearance; made his Descent in the Night, when he was least expected, in order to put the Enemy into Consternation! And likewise he labour'd to alarm their Fear, by the sounding of Trumpets, the Clashing of Pitchers, the Blazing of Torches, and by the Shouts of his Soldiers, every one crying aloud, The Sword of the Lord, and of Gideon .

Query 8. Why does our Author, in the Instance of Gideon, at first speak of God's commanding and directing him, and his obeying; and yet a Line or two afterwards, when he comes to make mention of the Use of outward Means, Why does he change the Form of Expression into the soft Word permit­ted? 'Tho' the Use of outward Means was permit­ted.' Had he no Design in this?

But I must hasten to the next Paragraph, which speaks of God's prohibiting David's building the Temple. For Answer to this Objection I refer the [Page 9] Reader to two Sermons upon Exodus xv. 3. now in Mr. Bradford's Press, and shall only add a little by Way of Reply, to two Particulars in the latter Part of the aforesaid Paragraph, (V. P. 5,) where our Author,

1st Enquires, in the following Words; ‘If a Cessation from War was necessary for the building that outward Temple, How much more so is it, for the Gathering of all Nations to be Members of the Church of Christ?’

Answer. A Freedom from the Disturbances and Injuries consequent upon offensive War, is, no doubt, a valuable Priviledge in many Respects; and what therefore we should not only desire after, but labour for, by opposing with all our Might, under God, the cruel Cause of those Miseries (viz. offensive War.) I therefore commend our Author's Zeal, in taking Pains to write against that great Iniquity (tho' I cou'd wish he had done it with more Distinctness, and then the Trouble of a Reply wou'd have been prevented.) I should be glad to hear of the Increase of his Zeal aforesaid, that so, if Necessity requir'd, he might with as great Readiness and Ar [...]or use his Sword, as he has his Quill against it, in order to its utter Ex­tirpation, and the procuring of that glorious and de­lightful Blessing of Peace!

2. Our Author towards the close of the aforesaid Paragraph speaks thus: ‘Tho' the Almighty is sti­led by Moses, A Man of War, he is called by the Apostle Paul, 2 Cor. xiii. 11. The God of Love and Peace. And the Apostle John saith, God is Love, and he that dwelleth in Love, dwelleth in God, and God in him, 1 John iv. 16.’ Here I would beg leave to propose a few Queries, viz.

Query 1. Was not God represented as full of Mercy under the Jewish Dispensation? See Exod. xxxiv. 6, 7. And the Lord passed by before him, and [Page 10] proclaim'd, The Lord, the Lord God, merciful and grac [...]ous, long-suffering, and abundant in Goodness and Truth, keeping Mercy for Thousands, forgiving Ini­quity, and Transgression, and Sin. Jer. xxxi. 20. Is Ephraim my dear Son? Is he a pleasant Ch [...]ld? For since I spake against him, I do earnestly remember him still; therefore my Bowels are troubled for him; I will surely have Mercy upon him, saith the Lord. Hos. xi 8. How shall I give thee up, Ephraim? How shall I deliver thee, Israel? How shall I make thee as Admah? How shall I set thee as Zeboim? Mine Heart is turned within me; my Repentings are kind­led together.

Query 2. Is not JUSTICE the Foundation of DE­FENSIVE WAR? And isn't God invariably just, as well as merciful, in his Nature? Is not Justice one of his essential Attributes? And if so, will it not follow, that he is, and always will be inclined to ap­prove of Defensive War, when there is a Necessity of it, so long as he retains the same Nature?

Query 3. Is there not a perfect and perpe [...]ual Har­mony between the Mercy and Justice of God? What is his Mercy or Love, but a Property of his Nature, inclining him to vouchsafe Kindnesses upon his peni­tent and believing Creatures? And what is his Ju­stice, but a Property of his Nature, disposing him to render to impenitent and unbelieving Transgres­sors, the Punishment due for their Offences *?

Now, tho' there be a Difference in the Objects up­on which those divine Perfections terminate in their outward Acts; yet there is none in the Principle of them; no! it is the same divine Nature, producing wisely and voluntarily various Effects upon different Objects, suitable to the different Occasions that pre­sent themselves, and in such a Way as serves to an­swer [Page 11] the End of God's Government over the intelli­gent Beings. Or,

Query 4. Has the great God, I would speak it with awful Reverence, lost one of his [...]ttributes, viz. his Justice, since the Gospel Dispensation (strict­ly so called) commenced? Or have we a GOD diffe­rent in Nature from the God of the Jewish Church? If not, then one of two Things in my Apprehension will necessarily follow, viz.

1. That what was moral, or, in other Words, a­greeable in itself to the divine Nature then, is so now; and consequently Defensive War is lawful. Or,

2. That we have no God at all, seeing he has lost one of his Attributes, he is imperfect, and of Con­sequence no God; for the Idea of a GOD necessarily includes absolute Perfection; and therefore upon this Hypothesis, there is now no Religion at all, no fu­ture State of Rewards and Punishments, they are all but a mere Chimera, a vain Phantom; the former has no Object, and the l [...]tter no Foundation of Cer­tainty; It is, I confess, a shocking, but, in my O­pinion, a just and unavoidable Consequence!

Now, seeing that from Truth nothing but Truth will flow, it is therefore evident, that the Princi­ple from which those Absurdities do naturally and freely proceed, must needs be false, viz. The De­nial of the Lawfulness of Defensive War.

The next Particular that our Author animadverts upon, is t [...]e f [...]llowing Passage of my Sermon, Page 8. ‘Surely a Protection from Iniuries, Peace among Neighbours, and the Administration of Justice, be desirable and valuable Benefits, which all Man­kind must with one Voice acknowledge; then of Consequence that which at Times is the only Mean left to procure them, must be lawful, necessary and valuable also.’

[Page 12]Our Author observes upon the aforesaid Words as follows, in his V. Page 6. ‘The only Mean here is War, and whether the Expression suits with the Belief of an over-ruling, omnipresent Providence, without whose Permission no Evil can happen, and who alone hath the Controul of every Thing, I would have a little to be thought upon.’

To which I answer, that the Sense our Author puts upon my Words (The only Mean) is forced, as may appear from the very Paragraph of the Ser­mon that immediately precedes what he has cited, (except one) in which I speak thus: War is no doubt lawful, and consequently approved by God, when undertaken by the Magistrate for the Pu­nishment of some great Injury or Wrong, which much affects the Credit and Interest of a Nation or People, after all softer Means fail of Success;’ i. e. All human outward Means; this Sense the Se­ries of the Sermon naturally leads to. Now, there being a Connection between this and the other Para­graph, the Sense of the Words (Only Mean) must be the same, viz. The only human or outward Mean; it was about such, and such only, that I was reasoning, and therefore it was a Force upon the Words to put that Sense upon them, which our Au­thor has done. This will appear more plainly from what I have said in the Improvement of the Sub­ject (S. p. 39) where it was proper that I should speak of spiritual Means; the Words are these;

‘But Sirs allow me to observe, that tho' out­ward Means are necessary and excellent in their Place, yet they are not like to be crowned with Success, except we look above them to God for Direction and Assistance; except we repent of our Sins, and reform our Lives.’ Here I plainly di­stinguish between outward and spiritual Means, as­sert a Necessity of, and yet an Insufficiency in both, [Page 13] without the Concurrence of Providence, to answer the End design'd.

Yet our Author is pleased to put a hard Sense upon the Words aforesaid, and thence takes Occa­sion to question my Belief of an overruling, omni­present Providence, and so gravely sets about the Proof of it for my Conviction . O unaccounta­ble! This is the first time in my Life that I have been charged with Atheism; for he that denies a Providence, of Consequence denies a God! He leaves out one Half of the Paragraph, and casts Dust upon me, in the Room of an Answer to the other. Now, whether such a Method of managing Controversy be a Sign of a good Cause, or of can­did Conduct, I leave to the Reader to determine, and proceed to consider,

The next Objection, which is Vind. p. 8. Here our Author cites Mr. Poole's Annotations on Sam. xxx. 7. and labours to make that learned and consi­stent Man's Writings serve a Purpose contrary to his professed Sentiments, but in vain: All that can be reasonably inferred from Mr. Poole's Gloss is this. That it was their Duty under that Dispensation to consult the Urim and Thummim upon the High-priest's Breastplate, for immediate Information and Direction in some difficult Cases.

Upon the aforesaid Instance our Author speaks thus, p. 8. ‘If then it had been an Error, not to have enquired of God, in so pinching a Case as this, the Consequence fairly deducible is, That should we be in the like Circumstances, we must make the like Enquiry, and receive the divine Per­mission and Command, otherwise David's Exam­ple will not be wholly followed.’

I answer, That if we were under the same Dis­pensation with David, the Consequence would be [Page 14] just and fair, that in the same Circumstances we should make the like Enquiry; but otherwise the Consequence is not fair; from different Premises the same Conclusion cannot flow, and so the Case is here.

In this Dispensation we have no temporal High-priest, with the Urim and Thummim upon his Breast­plate, from whom we may expect immediate and o­racular Answers about Things to come; and there­fore it is not possible for us, in this State of Things, wholly to follow David's Example.

Nor have we any Necessity for, or Promise of immediate objective Revelation, in place of the Jewish Urim, in the ordinary Times of the Gospel, from Christ our High-priest, in any Matters what­soever, whether temporal or spiritual, by Visions, Voices, &c. seeing the Prophecy is sealed, the Ca­non of Scriptures is compleated, and able to make the Man of God perfect, and thoroughly furnished to eve­ry good Work.

It is enough, that we have in place of the Urim a greater Measure of the Influences of the holy Spirit than the pious Jews ordinarily enjoyed, enlightening our Minds in the Use of appointed Means, to the right understanding of the Meaning of the holy Scriptures, and enabling us to believe their divine Authority; and so impressing the Truths contained in them upon our Hearts, as to transform them in­to the divine Image, and reform our Practice, a­greeable to the divine Law: This I call subjective Revelation, which is necessary to Salvation.

It is true, the Apostles were immediately inspired, or had an objective, infallible Revelation of new Truths, in the same extraordinary Manner which the Prophets of old had; and it was necessary it should be so in the Beginning of the Christian Institution, seeing they were to commit to Writing a Rule to di­rect [Page 15] the Faith and Practice of the Church in all suc­ceeding Ages, which they could not do infallibly without immediate Revelation; and of this extraor­dinary Endowment they could give certain rational Evidences, by working real Miracles; without which, we have no Reason to believe the Claims of any thereto.

But in the ordinary Times of the Gospel, after the Doctrines of Religion were sufficiently confirm­ed by miraculous Works, and the Rule of Faith and Practice fully committed to Writing, there is no Need of extraordinary Inspiration, or miraculous Works, the holy Scriptures, the sanctifying Influ­ences of the blessed Spirit, the Dispensations of di­vine Providence, together with the sober Use of our own Reason, are sufficient to direct us in every Du­ty we owe to God and Man.

Moreover it may be observed, that David did not in the aforesaid Instance, consult the Ephod, whether it was lawful to go to War in general, but whether it was expedient for him to pursue the Amalekites at that Time in particular, and what would be the Issue of it, 1 Sam. xxx. 8. And Da­vid enquired at the Lord, Shall I pursue after this Troop, shall I overtake them? and be answered him, pursue, for thou shalt overtake them, and without fail recover all; agreeable hereto is the Instance of Keilab, 1 Sam. xxiii. 9.—13. where David only consults the Ephod concerning Events, and receives Answers accordingly.

Now seeing the Government of our Nation is no Theocracy (nor the Government of any other) as the Jewish certainly was; if the Conductors of the State, must enter upon no Business of great Difficul­ty and Moment, till they get an immediate Answer concerning the Event, as the Jews did from the Urim, our national Affairs wou'd soon be embarras­sed [Page 16] in a Maze of inextricable Difficulty, and brought to Desolation and Ruin!

Upon the Supposition that some did by immedi­ate Inspiration, really obtain a certain Knowledge of some future Events, and of the Expediency of Performing this or that Duty at such a Time; yet if they cou'dn't prove the Reality of it to others, by miraculous Works, their bare Declaration cou'd give no reasonable Satisfaction to others that wanted such a Revelation, and so must needs fail of answer­ing the Necessities of the Publick.

Nor do we find that the Jews always consulted the Urim, respecting every of their Battles; and we know not that Abraham had any to consult a­bout his famous Fight with Chederla [...]mer—Yet he was at no Loss about his Duty, in that Affair, but directly obey'd the Call of Providence.

Our Author silently passes over what I have said in the 9 p. of the Ser. respecting the prudential Care that People take, in securing of their temporal Goods; and the Advice of King Asa to fortify their Cities, &c. as well as the Inference drawn from it, of preserving our Lives, which are a more valu­able Depositum (S. p. 10) and proceeds to confute my Argument from the Light of Nature, which he has tho't proper not to mention, and only finds Fault with my saying, that it was from God; and then labours to remove the Force of the Argument, by a Distinction.

Now in order to have a just View of this Matter, it will be necessary to cite my Argument and his An­swer, and then propose a few Queries.

The Argument in the Sermnon, is as follows (p. 10) ‘It is true, Man was originally created for the maintaining of Peace with his Fellows, and to this all the Laws of Nature, respecting others, have a primary Regard; yet when milder Measures can­not [Page 17] screen us from intollerable Injuries, the Light of Nature directs to fly to Force as the last Reme­dy, the last Resource; for the Obligation to the Offices of Peace is mutual, and binds all alike. Nature hath given no Man a Priviledge of break­ing her Laws at Pleasure towards others, and yet obliged them to maintain the Peace towards him: No; the Duty being mutual, should be mutual­ly performed; and he that violates the Laws of Peace, and seeks another's Destruction, may im­pute to his own Wickedness, all the Misery which another is necessitated in his own Defence, and in Pursuit of the Principle of it, to inflict upon him.’

Our Author's Answer is expressed thus, ‘The first Proof proposed in the Sermon, that War in the foregoing Instances is lawful, is from the Light of Nature; and I should not have attack'd the Arguments drawn from thence, had not the Wri­ter thereof asked, "Who is the Author thereof but God himself?" The following Distinction seems therefore necessary to be made: God crea­ted Man good, upright and holy, and had he con­tinued in this State, there never would have been any War, and consequently no Need of Self-de­fence: But Man falling, thro' Disobedience, his Nature became corrupted, his Faculties depraved, and the whole intellectual System disordered; thus began shedding of Blood, and the Earth was early filled with Violence. This was the unhap­py Consequence of Sin. I hope this Writer will not venture to say, that God was the Author of Nature thus corrupted; the Nature, and the Light of Nature, that he was Author of, was ho­ly, innocent and perfect; but the Corruption in Nature, from whence proceeded Violence and Bloodshed, was occasioned by adhering to the Voice of Satan.

[Page 18]To which I reply, as follows; Is it so, according to our Author's Acknowledgment, that had Man continued in his primitive, good, upright and holy State, there never would have been any War, and consequently NO NEED OF SELF-DEFENCE; then it naturally follows, from his own Method of Reasoning, that there is now Need of SELF-DE­FENCE: Seeing, as he justly observes, Man is fallen and corrupted. By War, our Author seems here plainly to mean Offensive War, and gives a brief, but substantial Hint of the Necessity of Self-defence (and consequently of Defensive War, which is the same) against it. This is wholsome Doctrine in­deed, and the very Sum of all that I have been con­tending for in the Sermon; the natural and easy Sense of the Words aforesaid, is this; If innocent Man had continued in his original Integrity, there would have been no Violence committed, and con­sequently no Need of Defence against it; but now Man is fallen, degenerate and corrupted, inclin'd to commit Acts of Violence, and to shed Blood, and therefore there is a Necessity of Self-defence, to screen us from that Violence; and thus our Author indeed reasons well in that Particular, but in the mean time gives up his Cause.

But this Consequence he seems to oppose, by ob­serving what confirms it, namely, That Violence proceeded from the Corruption of Nature, and was occasioned by adhering to the Voice of Satan; very true, all unjust Violence, or Offensive War (which is the same Thing in other Words) proceeds from those criminal Causes, and therefore there is a Ne­cessity of Self-defence, or of Defensive War, to op­pose and suppress that Violence, that Iniquity: Now inasmuch as Self-defence does oppose and tends to subdue it, it must needs proceed from a contrary, and therefore a good Cause; unless our Author sup­poses [Page 19] that the same Cause will produce contrary Ef­fects, which is absurd and impossible.

Our Author is pleased to express some Charity to­wards me, in the aforesaid Paragraph, by saying that he hopes I will not venture to say, that God was the Author of Nature thus corrupted; after ac­knowledging my Obligations to the Gentleman, for his charitable Sentime [...]ts,

I Answer, That Nature, and the Corruption of Nature, are two distinct and different Things; GOD is the Author of the former, but by no Means of the latter: By Nature I understand our very BE­INGS; and by the Corruption of Nature, any Dis­conformity to the moral Law of God, that cleaves to them in Man's fallen State.

There is likewise a great Difference between the Light of Nature, even in Man's fallen State, and the corrupt Inclinations of Nature; these often op­pose each other in Things moral, and therefore can­not be the same; this inward Conflict between Light and Lust, divers Pagans perceived and lamented§! Hence I may say justly, that our Author didn't do well in blending th [...]se Things together, in the afore­said Paragraph, by which his unwary Reader is apt to be imposed upon.

But to make this Matter still more plain, and easy to be understood, let it be observed, that I shewed in the Sermon what I meant by the Law of Nature (which this Gentleman has taken no Notice of) namely, something that was substantially the same with the Moral Law, p. 14.

It pleased GOD when he made Man, to impress upon his Mind, a Knowledge of the Offices which it was proper for him to perform towards GOD, his Neighbour and himself; this Knowledge was doubt­less [Page 20] impair'd by Man's Apostacy, yet there are still such Remains of it in the human Mind, as shew (if suitably attended to and improved) the principal moral Duties required of us; this I conceive the A­postle Paul confirms, Rom. ii. 14, 15. For when the Gentiles which have not the Law, do by Nature the Things contained in the Law (i. e. the moral Law revealed in the Scriptures) were a Law unto themselves, which shew the Work of the Law writ­ten in their Hearts, or some remaining Notices of it engraven upon their rational Nature; Their Consci­ences bearing Witness, and their Thoughts the mean while accusing or excusing one another.

Now tho' this Light of Nature be in a fallen corrupted Creature, yet it came originally from GOD, who is the Author of every good Gift; and hence Solomon calls the Spirit of Man the Candle of the Lord: It is true it is less in Degree and Influence than that which Adam enjoyed, yet it is and must be of the same Kind, inasmuch as it opposes the same moral Evils, and directs to the same moral Good, as far as it reaches.

It is called the Light and Law of Nature in a good Sense (which the Word Nature is capable of, as well as a bad) because the first Man received it together with his Nature or Being in Perfection, and we the Remains of it with ours. This Representa­tion the Scripture before mentioned confirms; The Gentiles did by Nature (i. e. not by the Inclinations of Nature, which, at least, generally tend to Evil, but by the Light of Nature which directs to and ap­proves of moral Good§. But what did those Gen­tiles do thro' the Instigation and Conduct of the a­foresaid Monitor? Why, The Things contained in the Law. What Law? Not the Ceremonial, for [Page 21] that the Gentiles had no Notions of, and therefore it must be the Moral, which is for Substance the same with the Law of Nature.

What tho' shedding of Blood and Violence in Defensive War, be the unhappy Consequence of Sin, i. e. There would have been no need thereof if Man had not sinned, yet it will not follow, as our Au­thor imagines, that it is therefore sinful; then by the same Way of Reasoning, human Laws, and Physick, and shedding the Blood of Criminals by the Magistrate are sinful, and should be carefully avoid­ed; which is false and absurd! Our Author's Ar­gument concludes too much, and therefore nothing at all to his Purpose: All those Particulars but now mentioned, tho' they be the Consequences of the Sin of Man, i. e. they wou'dn't have been necessa­ry, if Man had not sinned; yet they are not the [Page 22] proper Effects of Sin; it is not Sin and Satan, but God and right Reason that direct to the regular Use of them; and therefore inasmuch as the Fall of Man renders them necessary, it is an Argument for, and not against them.

The Light of Nature directs to Health in the first Place, by the Use of all proper Means, and chuses it as the most agreeable State; but in Case of Sick­ness, prescribes the Use of Physick, tho' disagreeable to our Inclinations, because medicinal and necessary for the Recovery of our Health.

And thus, undoubtedly, the same Light and Law of Nature directs to pursue Peace with our Neighbours in the first Place, and chuses it as the most desirable Condition; but when this is lost, thro' the Injustice of others, in important Instances, and cannot be recovered by gentle Methods, the Light of Nature directs to the Use of Force to obtain it, ei­ther by the Civil Law, or by Self-defence, and War as the last Remedy, which we are drove to with Reluctance, and by extream Necessity.

But to proceed, our Author observes in the afore­said Paragraph, ‘That the Light of Nature which God was the Author of, was holy and innocent: Which implies, that the Light of Nature in Man's fallen State, is sinful and guilty; and this he con­firms in the following Words; ‘For it is not from the degenerate fallen Light of Nature, that Argu­ments are to be drawn, for the Formation of Christian Principles, neither are any from it of any Weight in Opposition thereto.’

Now considering that the Light or Law of Na­ture I reasoned from, is substantially the same with the Moral Law;

'Was instituted for Man's Security, S. p. 12;

'Has a primary Regard to Peace;

'Lays a mutual Obligation upon Mankind to it,

[Page 23]'And threatens those that violate that Obligation with Punishment; thence I query,

1. Doesn't our Author's charging the Light of Nature, in Man's fallen State, as being sinful, ne­cessarily imply one of two Things, either an unfair speaking beside the Point, as I stated it, or some­thing worse; namely a calling in Effect the Promo­tion of Man's Security, a primary Regard and Obligation to Peace, together with the whole moral Law of God, sinful. This is a Blow at the Root of all Virtue and Religion; for if the moral Law be sinful, and it can't be otherwise, if the Light or Law of Nature (which is the same in Sub­stance with it) be so; then of Consequence it must be a Duty to break the Moral Law.

Query 2. Can that be sinful which opposed Sin in the Pagans, and directed them to keep the moral Law? Then two Contraries are one and the same!

Query 3. If the Light or Law of Nature is not from God, then pray who is it from? Has Sin or Satan formed such a beautiful and consistent Scheme of Offices, that does so much Honour to human Nature, and so much promotes the Weal of Socie­ty? Then certainly they have very much forgot their own Interest, and regarded ours, for which we are laid under very great Obligations of Grati­tude to them.

In the mean Time, I don't doubt but Mr. S. meant well, but he has sometimes an unhappy Way of expressing his good Intention.

But our Author proceeds to another Paragraph of my Sermon, Page 11. where I thus represent the sad Consequences of neglecting Self-defence; ‘If it be not lawful to oppose by Force unjust Inva­ders, then the Goods of Providence are vouch­safed to us in vain, and Men of the strictest Inte­grity, and Females of the most unblemish'd Vir­tue, [Page 24] will ever be expos'd as an easy Prey, to the vilest Insults of the most scandalous Scoundrels!

Upon which our Author observes as follows; p. 10, ‘If th [...]s [...] extraordinary Consequences are true, what a st [...]ong Faith in, and Dependance upon God do those manifest, who have embraced, and do religiously maintain the peaceable Doctrine?

To which I reply, That his saying the Conse­quences I drew are extraordinary, without offering any other Reason, does not prove the Point; and the very contrary follows, from these Consequences, to what our Author imagines; for this Reason, If the exposing of our Goods and Honour, continually without Necessity, to the Insults of Scoundrels, be true Consequences of the Neglect of Self-defence; then it cannot be that the Premises from which such absurd Consequences flow, should be Good, or from God; and consequently has no Promise of Protection annexed to it, without which it is Pre­sumption to depend on God in any Case.

It is true the Power of God is such, that he can if he pleases make Millions of Worlds more than there be, may we therefore expect that he will? No; it is a vain Confidence to expect Protection, out of the Way of proper Means. When Satan tempted our Saviour to cast himself down from the Pinacle, and yet expect Protection, he rejected the Motion.

There is no Instance in the Sacred Volume, of the Preservation of any in a Time of Danger and Calamity, but of such who had been, or were using proper Means for Defence.

In the mean Time I trust, that a Number of the Quakers and others, who from a Conscience misin­formed do oppose War, have true and saving Faith in Christ, and are upright before God in the general [Page 25] Course of their Conduct; notwithstanding of their Mistake in the aforesaid Particular.

As to the marvellous Interposure of Divine Pro­vidence, in respect of the Jebucta Fleet, which not long since struck such a Terror into this BRITISH-MAIN! of which our Author speaks, Vin. p. 10, 11. I wou'd only observe, That seeing the Dispersion of that Naval Armament, happened on the very E­vening of that Day which was appointed by the Go­vernment for Publick Prayer and Humiliation in NEW-ENGLAND, for Defence against that formida­ble Squadron; it may commend to our Esteem and Observance, such publick Solemnities upon pro­per Occasions: But if there had been no Preparati­on made for Defence, by the Inhabitants of the Massachusetts Colony, in providing the proper In­struments of War, is it not highly probable, that the aforesaid Fleet, would have rather entered the Bay of BOSTON, than the Haven of Jebucta?

Give me Leave likewise to observe here, en pas­sant, that Almighty GOD has put such singular Ho­nour, especially of late, upon that pious, generous, praying, and warlike People, above the other Pro­vinces on this Continent, not only in the Instance before mentioned, but also in taking the important Fortress of CAPE-BRETON, that Time itself will not be able soon to efface the Memory of those great E­vents: What ardent Piety, in amiable Union with the most heroick Bravery, opened all their Charms, in the High-places of the Field! when the intrepid Sons of New-England, nobly attack'd the aforesaid almost impregnable Fortress! But no Dan­ger, no Difficulty is too great for a brave Mind, Heaven smiling, to encounter and surmount.

[Page 26]Our Author proceeds next to remark upon a Pa­ragraph of the Sermon about Self-murder, Ser. p. 12, 13. which runs thus;

‘He that suffers his Life to be taken from him, by One that hath no Authority for that Purpose, when he might preserve it by Defence, incurs the Guilt of Self-murder: Since God hath enjoined him to seek the Continuance of his Life, and Na­ture itself teaches every Creature to defend itself when assaulted: In Particular, Nature hath not only given to Man a quick Sense of Injuries, that he might not suffer himself to be oppressed and in­sulted, but she hath also armed him with Strength and Ability of Body, that he should not be forced tamely and sordidly to submit! Tho' there is a Self-love that is criminal and vicious, viz. That which hath no Regard to the Honour, Safety and Interest of our Neighbour; yet there is a Self-love that is rational and excellent, which inclines us primarily to regard our own: And hence is that of the Apostle, That no Man ever yet hated his own Flesh, but nourisheth and cherish­eth it; if so, then it is every Man's Duty to love his own Life, to desire its Continuance, and use proper Means for its Preservation; for this Pur­pose the Almighty hath put into our Nature, a Principle that desires Life, avoids Death, and is afraid of its Approaches; for which Reason, it is call'd the King of Terrors.

My Opponent is pleas'd to remark, upon the a­foresaid Parrgraph, in the following Words, viz.

‘This Author should have consulted the Mean­ing of Self-murder, before he used the Term so freely in several Parts of this Sermon—Murder is defin'd to be a wilful and felonious killing another, upon prepensed Malice, &c. Felo de se, or a Self-murderer, is he that commits Felony, by wil­lingly [Page 27] and deliberately killing himself: So that the Case in the Sermon does not reach this Descripti­on, unless we can suppose, he who does not en­deavour to defend himself, is unactive from a wil­ful deliberate Desire of being killed. It is with­out Doubt every Man's Duty to use proper Means for the Preservation of Life; but if any Man is convinced that Christ hath forbidden him the Use of military Preparations, and yet will use them, they are to him very improper Means, Mat. xvi. 25.26.’

To which I reply, as follows, namely, That these Arguments, in my Opinion, support the Charge in the preceding Paragraph:

1. The Command of God to seek the Continu­ance of Life.

2. The Light of Nature's teaching the Reasona­bleness of Self-defence, from the Example of the Brute-creation, as well as from the Sense of Injuries, which is natural to Men, and the Ability given by the Almighty whereby they might resist them.

3. The reasonable Self-love that is recommended in the divine Oracles.

4. The natural Desire of Life, and Fear of Death, implanted in the human Nature.

All these our Author acknowledges by his Si­lence; and only offers three Exceptions against the Consequence I draw from them. The

1. Of which is a Definition of Self-Murder, ex­tracted, I suppose, from some Law Book; which is this, ‘A Self-murderer, is he that commits Fe­lony, by willingly and deliberately killing him­self.’

To which I answer, That our Author by his own Pen proves the Charge; because the Definition he offers of Self-murder, is applicable in some Degree to the Neglecters of Self-Defence: For,

[Page 28]1. They willingly and deliberately hold a Princi­ple, contrary to the Use of an apt Mean to preserve Life in Danger.

2. In Pursuance of this Principle, they are here supposed to neglect that Mean willingly, when the Use of it is necessary and seasonable.

3. The necessary Consequence of which is their Death; which must therefore be charged upon them, at least in some Measure, so long as it is just and reasonable to believe, that a Premises contains in it its just and natural Consequences; or a Cause its na­tural Effects; that is, so long as Men are rational, and intelligent Beings.

4. It ought also to be considered, that he who doesn't endeavour to prevent an Evil, which it is, under God, in his Power probably to prevent, by the Use of an apt Mean, not forbidden, is Partaker of that Evil, Eph. v. 11. Have no Fellowship with the unfruitful Works of Darkness, but rather reprove them; that is, says Mr. Poole, ‘Not only do not practise them yourselves, but do not join with o­thers in them, by Consent, Advice, Assistance, or any other Way, whereby ye may be defiled by them;—but convince them, not only by your Words, but especially by your Actions, which be­ing contrary to them, will both evidence them to be, and reprove them, as being Works of Dark­ness.’

Supposing a Magistrate should suffer gross Wick­edness complained of and proved, to pass trium­phant, without opposing it, without inflicting the Penalty prescribed by the Law, woudn't he be a Partaker thereof, and bear the Sword in vain? And isn't the Case the same as to Heads of Families, when they don't labour to check with Force and Se­verity growing Evils in their Houses, when other Means fail of Success?

[Page 29]Wasn't Eli's excessive Mildness and passive Beha­viour towards his Sons, the Cause of his Grief and their Ruin? See 1 Sam. ii. 22—24. Nay, my Sons, said he, it is no good Report that I hear; ye make the Lords People to transgress. Eli's Sin, says Mr. Poole, in this Matter, was not only that he ‘Re­proved them too gently, but especially, that he contented himself with a verbal Rebuke, and did not restrain them, as is said, Chap. iii. 13. For this the Almighty told him, that he would judge his House for ever.

Surely, as Solomon observes, He that spareth his Rod, hateth his Son, but he that loveth him, chast­neth him betimes, Prov. xiii. 24. Hence we may see how hateful to God, and pernicious to Men, the Doctrine and Practice of absolute Non-Resistance are. If Resistance, and all Use of Force, be a Sin, it must be of Consequence sinful for Parents to correct their Children, and Masters their Servants; yet these Things are commanded; it must therefore be a Sin to obey the positive Commands of God, upon the aforesaid Hypothesis. Can we think that such an unaccountable Doctrine can come from Heaven, as makes the Almighty contradict himself, who is all Wisdom and Harmony in his Perfections, his Pre­cepts, and all his Government! A Doctrine that not only tends to overthrow all Rule and Authority in the State, but to destroy at a Stroke all Family Go­vernment and Order!

Whatever Influence Instruction and Example may have upon some ingenuous Minds, to form them to Virtue and Piety, yet others, of a more obstinate Turn, are like to be ruined, unless they be learned Wisdom by Stripes.

Unless Correction had been necessary, an All-wise God would have never commanded it.

[Page 30]Surely the Passion of Fear was not put into the human Soul by the Author of Nature in vain; no, but for valuable Purposes, both in respect of Socie­ty and Religion. As a Consequence of this I may say,

5. That he who suffers such, whom he has Rea­son to conclude have a murderous Intention to assas­sinate him, and consequently without Resistance to kill him, may be said interpretatively to consent to their murderous Design; because he opposes not, by all proper Means in his Power, the Execution of it. But to proceed:

The second Exception of our Author against the Charge aforesaid, is his Reasoning from the Descrip­tion of Murder already mentioned, in the following Manner, namely, ‘That the Case in the Sermon does not reach the aforesaid Description, unless we can suppose, he who does not endeavour to de­fend himself, is unactive, from a wilful and deli­berate Desire of being killed.’

To which I answer, That he who willingly and deliberately uses a Mean, and that from a fixed Prin­ciple, that has a natural Aptness to answer a certain End, does at least virtually aim at the End to which the Mean tends, and so is chargeable with the Conse­quence, whether he actually aims at the End or not; because he is a rational Creature, who ought to act with Discretion and Design. If he doesn't actually aim at the End, to which the Mean he uses has a natural Fitness, it argues Weakness of Mind, to choose Means that verge to an End he dislikes: However, if the aforesaid Person doesn't aim at his own Death actually, notwithstanding of the Weak­ness and Inconsistency that attend his Conduct, yet the Malignity of the Crime is no doubt lessened in Degree, because that lies much in Intention. In the mean time, as the Prophet Ezekiel informs us, Who­soever [Page 31] beareth the Sound of the Trumpet, and taketh not Warning, if the Sword come and take him away, his Blood shall be upon his own Head.

Supposing a pious Person abstains totally from Food, with a religious Design, to be conformed to the Example of Christ's Fasting, and presumptuous­ly expecting to be miraculously supported without Food for Forty Days, dies in that Space, woudn't he be guilty of Self-murder in some Degree, tho' his Crime is not so heinous and aggravated, as if he de­signed his own Death? But I proceed to the third Exception, which is this: ‘It is without doubt, says our Author, every Man's Duty to use proper Means for the Preservation of Life; but if any Man thinks that Christ hath forbidden him the Use of military Preparations, and yet will use them, they are to him very improper Means.

Here observe, that in the aforesaid Paragraph our Author tacitly acknowledges the Lawfulness of mili­tary Preparations in themselves, as Means to pre­serve Life; and that it is every Man's Duty to use them, who reckons them lawful; which is indeed a giving up of his whole Cause. Great is the Power of Truth *. But,

2. He concludes, ‘That any One who is convinced that Christ hath forbidden him the Use of military Preparations, they are to him improper Means.’ It is very true, they are so, at that Time, till he is better instructed; for doubtless it is a Sin to act con­trary to Conscience, and therefore it is a necessary Duty, in such a Case, to use with Speed and Im­partiality, all proper Means to obtain Light from God!

Our Author's citing Mat. xxv. 26. and Poole's Annotations upon the Place, to prove that we ‘Shou'dn't act contrary to Conscience, in order to [Page 32] escape Sufferings upon a religious Account, is quite foreign to the Point in Question, which is strictly and properly a civil and not a religious Mat­ter: Who denies that we shou'dn't suffer patiently upon the Score of Religion, when called thereto by divine Providence? If the Magistrate under which we live, shou'd persecute us, because of our religi­ous Principles or Practice, no doubt we should en­dure it with Calmness and Meekness; but this is very different from our being passive under the Vio­lence of a foreign Foe, who comes to rob us of our Goods, and therefore jumbling those Things toge­ther, that are so very different, serves only to de­ceive the unwary Reader!

But our Author's following Paragraph, is very unjustifiable, namely this, ‘That if any sincere Christian understands it to be his Duty, not to make any Defence at all, his forbearing to use any, will never incur Guilt.’

Ans. Tho' Ignorance of the Evil of any Crime, and a false Perswasion consequent upon it, do, if the Ignorance is not affected and wilful, lessen its Ma­lignity, yet they cannot totally remove it.

1. Because that Ignorance and Error are Sins themselves, Isa. xxvii. 11. 2 Pet. ii. 1. and there­fore can't take away the Guilt of other Sins, or jus­tify our Conduct in following the aforesaid blind Guides.

2. Because the holy Scriptures are the supream Rule, which we are bound to search and understand, especially in Things of great Moment, and to which we ought to be conformed, both in Sentiment and Practice, Isa. viii. 20. 2 Tim. iii. 16, 17. and Conscience is but a subordinate or ruled Rule; For God is greater than our Conscience, and knoweth all Things, 1 John iii. 20.

3. Things of a moral Nature, are either good or [Page 33] bad in themselves, antecedent to, or before our Tho'ts about them; nor can our Opinion alter their Nature. If our Ignorance or wrong Perswasion do justify wholly a continued Neglect of Duty, or Sin of Omission; by a Parity of Reason, they may justify a Sin of Commission; and if one, why not an­other? And consequently the Guilt of all Crimes, yea the greatest, will be removed by what is criminal, which is very absurd!

This Notion will justify Saul's persecuting the primitive Christians from City to City, even unto Death! For he verily tho't with himself, that he ought to do many Things contrary to the Name of Je­sus of Nazareth, Acts xxvi. 9. which is very shock­ing!

This Notion likewise justifies all the Persecutions, or Sufferings upon a religious Account, which the Quakers have endured, at any Time or Place, since they have appeared in the World; in case that those who oppressed them, tho't it their Duty so to do, which Charity obliges us to hope they did, at least some of them.

Now why does our Author appear as an Advo­cate for the Quakers unattack'd, and yet in the mean Time, hold a Principle, that in its natural Conse­quences, justifies all their unreasonable Sufferings? Is this rational? Is this consistent?

Our Author takes Notice of another Passage in the Sermon, p. 13. viz. this, ‘Well, if Self-mur­der be a heinous Sin, it will follow by the Law of Contraries, that Self-defence is an important Duty: Surely he who is unjustly attacked, and does not endeavour by suitable Means to preserve his Life, especially if there be any probability of Success, in so doing betrays it, and so is guilty of Suicide; a Crime of the first Magnitude and deepest Dye!’

‘Upon this Passage (faith our Author) I would [Page 34] remark, that frequently the most suitable Means to preserve Life, when attacked, is to deliver up that for which the Attack is made.’

I answer, 1. Sometimes the Attack is with a ma­licious Design to murder: and then if that be deli­vered up, for which the Attack is made, the Life itself must be given up.

2 If the Attack be for [...], and we tamely de­liver them up, without Resistance, do we not here­by encourage the Wickedness of the Wicked, and wrong ourselves and Families (and that perhaps in Matters of such great Importance as ruin both, and are these Things just and good?

But our Author proceeds to say, ‘If however I were thus attacked by Villains, who were so wick­ed as to determine to take away my Life, were I in the meek and peaceable Disposition, which the Gospel inculcates, I believe that would have such an Effect upon the worst of Men, that it would disarm their Malice; but if it did not, my sub­mitting calmly, and resigning my Life, rather than running the Risque of taking away another's, would be so far from Suicide, that it would be acting agreeable to the Nature and Temper of the Gospel, and consequently highly rewardable.

To which I reply, that there are these Defects in the aforesaid Paragraph, which render it inconclu­sive, viz.

1. A Miracle is expected without a Promise, which is presumptuous.

2. The Question in Debate is begged, that should be proved, which is unfair, viz. That the [Page 35] Neglect of Self-defence upon a proper Occasion, is agreeable to the Nature and Temper of the Gospel.

3. It seems to be here suppos'd, that the Gospel Dispensation, strictly so called, is different in Na­ture from the Jewish, which is untrue, as appears from the Appendix annexed to my Sermon, which our Author tho't proper not to meddle with in his Animadversions, and yet takes for granted what it opposes.

4. It seems to suppose, as if our Author imagined that his meek and peaceable Disposition wou'd have more Influence upon Villains than the meek Temper of our Saviour and his Apostles, which is absurd! For their Malice was not disarm'd by the latter, and how then is it probable it shou'd by the for­mer?

I heartily wish that the Gentleman, my Opponent, and all of his Principles, may never have their Per­swasion put to the Trial, upon such melancholy Occasions!

To what has been said under this Head, of Self-murder, I would add the following Observation of Mr. Poole in his Synopsis; Thou shalt not kill, that is, unlawfully; ‘This Precept (saith he) treats concerning all these Things which in Scripture are called Murder; nor are we to imagine that Divini­ty treats no otherwise of Murder than civil or hu­man Laws; one of the original Words, properly signifies an unjust killing.’

So that our Author finds Fault with me, for keeping within my own proper Province, and speak­ing like a Divine from the Desk, and not like a Lawyer from the Bench or Bar, in a Sermon upon the [Page 36] Point in Controversy; which, whether it be a just Censure, let others judge.

As to the Instance of the Night Robber, mentio­ned in the Sermon, p. 12, in the Vindication, p. 13. I shall for the sake of Brevity only mention Mr. Poole's Annotations on the Place (Ex. xxii. 2) which I think sufficiently solve the Difficulty our Author has started, and add a few Words; ‘For the Thief (says Mr. Poole) tho' he be killed by a Man in his own Defence, because in that Case, the Thief might be presumed to have a worse Design, and the Owner of the House cou'd neither ex­pect, nor have the Help of others, to secure him from the intended Violence; nor guide his Blows with that Discretion, which in the Day Time he might use; If the Sun be risen, there shall be Blood shed for him; he that kills him, shall be put to Death. Because he punished him more than his Crime de­served, and might have been otherwise either se­cured, or righted; and in that Case, it is proba­ble, the Thief design'd not Murder, but Theft only; but if it were evident that the House-break­er design'd Murder, he might doubtless kill him in his own Defence.

Augustine gives this Reason why the Law of Mo­ses allow'd of killing a Thief in the Night, but not in the Day; ‘Because (says he) after Sun-rising, a Man might distinguish whether the Thief came to kill, or barely to steal; in the latter Case, he was not to be killed.’ In Quest. 84, on the Book of Exodus.

I might add hereto, the Sentiment of the famous Rabbi Maimonides, who may be reasonably suppo­sed to understand thoroughly the political Laws of his own Nation; he observes, ‘That no private Person was permitted to kill another, except in [Page 37] Defence of that which if once lost is irreparable, as Life and Chastity.’

To what has been said, I shall only add, That our Author, in his Gloss aforesaid, has been so un­happy, or rather happy, in his Manner of Expres­sion, as to give up the Cause for which he contend­ed; for by his Pen he has acknowledged the Ne­cessity of Self-defence, in these Words, (V. p. 14) 'Whilst the Owner of the House was making a ne­cessary 'Defence: Sound Doctrine indeed; Truth will out sometimes: Now if the Gentleman wou'd but stand by this, our Controversy would soon come to a comfortable Period; which I am not without Hopes it will.

He next proceeds to consider a Query I propo­sed under the Margin of the 12 p. from Luke xxii. 36. where Christ enjoins his Disciples, That each of them who wanted a Sword, should sell his Coat and buy one; from which I propose this Query, ‘If Christ was against all Fighting and War, to what Purpose did he counsel his Disciples to buy Swords, must they be bought and never used, or bought for nothing?

Our Author answers, Vind. p. 14. ‘That we have no Account of the Disciples ever using Swords after Christ's Ascension; and we have seve­ral very strong Intimations that they did not, which sufficiently demonstrates that they did not under­stand the Text in its present literal Acceptation.’

To which I reply, by way of Query,

1. Where are those several very strong Intima­tions that our Author speaks of? Why did not he mention some of them?

Query 2. Was it any more lawful to have Swords before Christ's Ascension, than after? If this be sup­posed, pray what is the Reason?

[Page 38] Query 3. Didn't Christ suffer some of his Disci­ples to wear Swords before his Ascension without Re­proof? Now, wherefore were they suffered to wear them? Was it for Ostentation, or Defence in their Travels?

Query 4. Was that a spiritual Sword with which Peter struck off Malchus's Ear?

Query 5. If we take the Sword in a spiritual Sense, why not the Coat? Doesn't it seem hard and unprecedented, to take two Words joined in one Sentence in different Senses? Well, if we take the Word Coat in a spiritual Sense, as well as the Sword, and consider that the Righteousness of Christ is com­pared to a Garment, and likewise Holiness in Scrip­ture, and that the Word written is termed a Sword, will not the Sense be this, That we should part with the Robe of Christ's Righteousness, or the Garment of Holiness in order to buy a Bible, and is this a reasona [...]e Bargain?

‘It is probable at least, saith Grotius, that some of the Apostles wore Swords in travelling, in the Sight, and with the Knowledge of our Saviour, during the whole Time they accompanied him; which Josephus informs us, other Galileans also did, in their Journey from their own Country to Jerusalem (the Roads being much infested with Highwaymen) and who also tells us the s [...]me o [...] the Essenes, the most quiet and peaceable of all Men . Hence it came to pass, that when Christ told his Disciples, such a Time was at hand, That they should sell even their Garments, to buy Swords, the Apostles presently answered, That there were two Swords in their Company, and in that Com­pany there were none but the Apostles. They un­derstand their Master as speaking of temporal Swords, and he did not reprove them. Perhaps it may be [Page 39] suggested, that Christ's saying, it was enough, im­plied a Reproof; I answer, no, not at all; for two Swords were enough for that little Company for the present to guard them from the Robbers, while they kept together; but when they parted, and travell'd two and two in Company, it was but proper they should have more.

As to the Gloss of those Gentlemen (who carried on the Annotations begun by Mr. Poole) which is mentioned by our Author, tho' they are inclined to take the Passage in a spiritual Sense, yet they signify that others were of another Mind, and only say, that it was difficult to reconcile their Sense of the Words to the Apostles Practice, and to the last Words of our Saviour, It is enough: But they don't say it is impossible; and if they had, they would have been very much mistaken. For my part, I can't but think a much greater Difficulty attends their Sense of the Words. Mr. Poole in his Synopsis upon the Place speaks thus: ‘He does not so much exhort them to oppose Force by Force, as from a Foresight of the Enmity they were to be exposed to, to repress their private Animosities or Resentments *:’ This includes the Sense I have been pleading for.

But famous GROTIUS is still more express, and takes the Words absolutely in their plain literal Sense; ‘Let him, saith he, by all Means get a Sword; if it cannot be had otherwise, even by the Sale of his Garment; whoever has a Purse, let him take it, with the Scrip, and whoever has no Sword, let him rather sell his Coat than want One; for this is the Custom of Mankind, when Violence is fear'd .’

[Page 40]Here let me propose a few Queries, viz.

Query 1. Is it not most safe to take Places of Scripture in their literal Sense, when it involves no Absurdity, and is not contrary to the Analogy of Faith?

Query 2. Doesn't Grotius's Sense of the Text a­foresaid, agree best with the Context? Where Christ says, When I sent you without Purse or Scrip, lack­ed ye any Thing? But now he that hath a Purse, let him take it; and likewise his Scrip, and he that hath no Sword, let him sell his Garment, and buy One. If the Sword be taken in a spiritual Sense in the latter, why not the Purse and Scrip in the former? And then wou'dn't it follow, that CHRIST sent forth his Apostles into the Ministry without necessary spiritual Qualifications, which is not true!

Give me leave to mention some Hints of an inge­nious Pen upon this Head, not long since inserted in the Gazette; his Strokes methinks are pertinent and pungent!

He justly observes, that these Words of Christ to Peter, Put up again thy Sword into his Place, con­vey an Idea very different from laying it aside for ever as unlawful; do they not rather hint, that the Sword, when in its proper Place, is ready upon a suitable Occasion; Luke xxii. 35, we find very plainly Christ's Opinion of the Necessity of having Swords in these Words; When I sent you without Purse, and Scrip, and Shoes, lacked ye any Thing? And they said, Nothing. This was done when our Lord sent his Disciples, Chap. x. 1. into every City and Place whither he himself would come; but now when the Lord is about to be offered up, and his Disciples are to remain in the World, it [Page 41] seems they are not to expect a miraculous Support and Defence; for Christ says, Chap. xxii. 36. But now, he that hath a Purse, let him take it, and like­wise his Scrip; and he that hath no Sword, let him sell his Garment, and buy One; (He that hath a Purse, let him take it) Money, it seems, in the tedious Journey of human Life, was lawful and necessary (and likewise his Scrip) Provisions or Food were also (and he that hath no Sword, let him sell his Garment, and buy One) but a Sword was lawful, and still more necessary, even of great­er Consequence than our very Clothes; and the Experience of Christians, from that Time down to the present, may be appealed to, Whether Mo­ney and Provisions have not been found very use­ful, and, in many Cases, the Defence of Mens Lives and Liberties, of greater Consequence than Food or Raiment; agreeable to our Saviour's Words in another Place, Is not the Life more than Meat, and the Body than Raiment?’ Mat. vi. 25.

‘Yet how punctually do some Christians perform the first and second Parts of this Injunction? Very diligently they provide Purse and Scrip, yet ne­glect that most necessary Provision the Sword, not­withstanding Food and Raiment are represented by Ch [...]ist of so much less Consequence than Life, which, under Providence, is protected and defend­ed by the Sword, and (on account of its signal Use no doubt) is commanded to be purchased at the Expence of our Garments. It has been already shewn, that Christianity was not to be forced upon People by the Sword; what better Use then re­mains, than the Defence of our Country, and the Protection of the Helpless and Innocent?

‘Should some object on the Answer, Verse 38. Lord, behold here are two Swords, Christ said, It is enough; let them remember, that the Propor­tion [Page 42] which was adjusted for the Disciples, is enough in most well peopled Countries.’

Our Author next cites a Sentence of my Sermon, p. 14. which is this; War was lawful under the Old Testament Dispensation, and therefore is lawful under the New.

Upon which he remarks as follows; ‘Let us see how this extraordinary Inference will hold in other Cases; Burnt-Offerings, Sacrifices and Circumci­sion, were lawful under the Old Testament Dispen­sation, are they therefore so row?’ Vind. p. 15.

I answer; If our Author had not dealt unfairly with my Paragraph, in breaking the Connection of the Jewish Dispensation and moral Law apparent in it, which I formed with Design, and so put a Sense upon it contrary to what he might see was my In­tention in the next Page, where I express the Limi­tation I had in View in writing the aforesaid Words; namely this, in Things of a moral Nature: I say, if he had taken notice of that, it would have spoiled his vain Triumph about Sacrifices, which had no o­ther Foundation [...]t his own Oversight, or some­thing worse, but I would hope the former!

Our Author next proceeds to animadvert upon my Argument from the sixth Command, S. p. 14. which is this: ‘The sixth Commandment does undoubtedly imply a lawful War; for if we must not kill o­thers, much less ourselves; and if we must have no Hand in our own Death, we must defend our Lives against Violence, which sometimes cannot be done without War. Now, the blessed Jesus never came to destroy the moral Law, or the Law of Nature, which is in Substance the same, but to fulfil it: Do we make void the Law by Faith (or by the Doctrines of the Gospel) says the Apostle? No; but we establish the Law. Moral Precepts are grounded upon invariable Equity, upon the [Page 43] Nature and Reason of Things, and so cannot be alter'd.’

The Foundations or Grounds of the aforesaid Rea­soning, which proves Defensive War to be implied in the sixth Command, are these, viz.

1. Reasonable Love to ourselves, in a Degree su­perior to others. If we must not kill others, much less ourselves; why? Because we must love our­selves more in Degree than them. Now, does our Author deny, either that we should love ourselves at all, or in a Degree superior to others? No!

2. Another Ground is the Necessity of our avoid­ing having a Hand in our own Death; from which i [...] inferred, by the Law of Contraries, that we should preserve our Lives: What can be more plain?

3. Another Ground is the intrinsick Equity of this Precept, and its Confirmation by the Gospel. Now▪ can any Reasoning be built upon firmer Foundation [...] than these mentioned? Does our Author deny those Principles I reason from? No! Well, isn't my Reasoning from them just and natural, thus, If we must not kill others, because we love them; much less ourselves, because we love ourselves more in De­gree.

Farther; If we must have no Hand in our own Death, we must defend ourselves against unjust Vio­lence: The Reason of the Consequence is the Law of Contraries, which always holds good §. The Negative, in the very Nature of Things, necessarily implies the Positive; if we are altogether passive, when formidably attacked, and suffer our Death to be compassed without resisting, when we can resist, we virtually consent to it.

Now, are not the Reasons of these Consequences just and clear? Does our Author deny them in par­ticular? [Page 44] No! Well, seeing he grants the Premisses, from which I argue, and offers nothing in particular against the Reasons of the Consequence, it will hold good, he cannot avoid it. If the aforesaid Princi­ples be not plain and self-evident, and the Conse­quences or Deductions from them just and clear, I know not what is.

Well, but our Author doesn't like it: Why so? Hear his own Words, Vind. p. 15, 16.

‘There are such strange Absurdities in this Man­ner of declaiming, and drawing Conclusions, a Man must be very blind that cannot see them. A posi­tive Precept is made to imply its direct Reverse: A Commandment not to kill, is implied to autho­rize Killing: And in Consequence thereof the bles­sed Jesus is supposed to approve of War. Whe­ther this be agreeable to his Life and Doctrines, the Reader is desired to consult.’

To which I reply as follows, Stay, Sir, and cool a little; why so hasty? why so hot? Take care that the Charge of declaiming does not turn upon your­self, which it will do unavoidably, if you don't give good Reason for your Censure.

Let us therefore examine the Strength of our Au­thor's Reasonings against the Consequence aforesaid. And,

1. He says, Vind. p. 16. 'A positive Precept is made to imply its direct Reverse.'

I answer no, not at all, unless it be in Sound, not in Substance or Reality: 'Tis true, it forbids the killing of any unjustly, and yet at the same time en­joins, or allows of the just killing of Criminals by the Magistrate, but inasmuch as this killing and not killing respect different Persons, and contrary Cau­ses, it implies no Contradiction. But if our Author does not like this Solution of the Difficulty he starts, will he please to excuse me, if I venture to turn his [Page 45] GREAT GUN upon himself, not to hurt him, but to convince him of his Mistake, and see how he will like it. ‘There are such strange Absurdities in this Manner of declaiming, and drawing Conclusions, a Man must be very blind that cannot see them.’ E. G. The sixth Command, with its Threatening, according to our Author's Judgment, is thus, Thou shalt not kill; but if thou dost, thou shalt be killed by the Hand of the Magistrate (if he does not deny all civil Government, he must own this) then the Consequence comes upon himself; he makes posi­tive Precept to imply its direct Reverse; in a Com­mandment not to kill, he imagines that an authori­zing of killing is implied; I leave it to our Author's Prudence to clear himself in what Way he sees best.

As to his Query afterwards, Vind. p. 16. ‘And in Consequence thereof the blessed Jesus is suppo­posed to approve of War. Whether this be a­greeable to his Life and Doctrines, the Reader is desired to consult.’

I answer, The blessed Jesus, in his Doctrine, ex­plained and confirmed the moral Law; this he him­self informs us, He came not to destroy, but to fulfil; he likewise solemnly assures us, That till Heaven and Earth pass, one Jot, or one Title, shall in no wise pass from the Law—and that whosoever therefore shall break one of the least Commandments, and shall teach Men so, he shall be called the LEAST in the Kingdom of Heaven, Mat. v. Now, was not the Life of Christ agreeable to his Doctrine? Yes surely.

If our Author doesn't like this Answer, he must chuse one for himself; for the aforesaid Query con­cerns him in Effect as much as me.

I may likewise for the sake of Brevity, leave his other following Query to himself to Answer, in a Consistency with his Doctrine of killing Criminals by [Page 46] the Magistrate, or his Order, which is the same Thing.

‘Where there is one (saith our Author, V. p. 16) who take it in its first Sense (i. e. the Sixth Command as forbidding War) slain, are there not many Thousands of the latter killed in the Prac­tice of Fighting?’

I Answer, It may be so; but in the mean Time, if those that hold the Doctrine of absolute Non-Re­sistance, are not slain, they have Reason to thank those under GOD for their Protection, who hold Defensive War, and therefore shou'dn't slight them, and condemn them upon that Account!

Farther, if our Author's Observation be just, as it probably is, then the Doctrine of absolute Non-Resistance is a Flesh-pleasing Doctrine; seeing that it tends to save the Cash, and (in some Sense) to protect the Buff, tho' ingloriously; I confess it passes my Understanding to perceive much Spiritu­ality and Self-denial in such Matters; but I leave it to every one to judge for himself; and pro­ceed.

Our Author complains of my Explication of Prov. xxii. 3. in his V. p. 16. and observes, ‘That I make hiding one's self, and preparing for De­fence, so exactly alike, that they are taken the one for the other.’

I Answer, They are, in my Opinion, alike; for he that rightly prepares for Defence, provides a Hiding-place from the Enemy, a Fort and Instru­ments of War, to screen him from their Vengeance; and are not these Things the Intention of a Hiding-place, viz. to conceal and protect?

Here I may enquire how can a prudent Man, who, according to the common Course of Things, foresees temporal Danger and Calamity approaching, [Page 47] rationally hide himself, in the Neglect of the afore­said Method?

‘He foresees the Evil both of Sin and Punish­ment which he is like to incur, by considering Scripture and History, and the natural Tendency of Causes; he foresees those Evils that he may shun them; he betakes himself to a Place of Safety, as is done in a Tempest or in War: He declines the Occasions of Sin, and av [...] Dan­ger from himself; he hides himself till the Indig­nation of God or Man be overpast; says Mercer and Jejerus. See 1 Kings xvii. 3. Isa. xlvi. and xxxii. 2. Mat. x. 23.’

But the Simple pass on and are punished; ‘Pass­ing they are punished,' say Junius and Tremelli­us. 'While they go rashly and imprudently, wherever their Minds lead them, and pass secure­ly, they are punished,' says Piscator. 'They cast themselves into Danger,' saith Vatabulus. Like Travellers, who not perceiving their Danger, do not labour to shun it, saith Marian and Casta­lio. 'They pass on to Evils, which thro' their Folly they don't foresee; or, having foreseen them, have slighted them,' saith Mercer. 'They go on boldly and carelessly in their customary Road,' saith Jejerus. 'And are punished; being involved in Misery, and oppressed, they pay the Punishment of their Imprudence, saith Mercer.

But our Author proceeds to mention the follow­ing Paragraph of my Sermon, p. 14. viz.

‘Now if the Almighty has approved of War formerly, and there is still the same Necessity of it, under the Gospel-Dispensation as before, it will follow, that it is equally lawful now: It is absurd to suppose, that the blessed God, who is infinite in Wisdom, and unalterable in his Nature, would determine contrarily at different Periods of [Page 48] Time, concerning a Case that is substantially the same!’

Upon which our Author remarks as follows, ‘If this Manner of Arguing proves any Thing, it proves Offensive War, as lawful as De [...]ive. God approved of the Israelites taking away the Possessions of many Nations: He commanded them to destroy some utterly; is it therefore e­qually lawful to do so now, whether we have this Command or not?’

To which I reply, That Almighty GOD never commanded Offensive War (properly and strictly so called) Perhaps this may be reckoned by some a Paradox; but I think it is a plain Truth; the aforesaid Instances are not Offensive War, which is the unjust Invasion of another's Right; for the blessed God, who is the absolute and original Pro­prietor of all, transferred the civil Right of those Nations, which they forfeited by Sin, to the Peo­ple of Israel, previous to, or before their taking Possession thereof; and, as absolute Lord of Life, and a righteous Governor and Judge, for their ex­traordinary Wickedness, gave his People Israel Au­thority and Commission to punish them, and put them to Death. In the former Instance, they did but take forcible Possession of their own Country and Goods; and in the latter, they were but Executio­ners of judicial Punishment under a proper Authori­ty, and therefore there was nothing of Offensive War in those Things.

The Almighty never did, nor, to speak with Re­verence, ever can, in a Consistency with the Purity and Perfection of his Nature, enjoin such a wicked and abominable Thing as Offensive War!

It is true the Manner of conveying the aforesaid civil Right, and penal Authority, was extraordinary and immediate, peculiarly suited to that Dispensa­tion, [Page 49] which was a Theocracy, God himself being their King, in an extraordinary and immediate Way; a Priviledge which no other Nation ever had, or, so far as we know, are like to have.

And therefore not only civil Rights, and judicial Power and Authority, are conveyed always mediate­ly to other Nations, by ordinary human Means, ac­cording to the different Laws, Constitutions and Customs of Countries; but also the claiming the afore­said Rights, and exercising the aforesaid Authority, must be mediate also, regulated by human Reason, agreeable to the Laws of different States and King­doms.

Hence if the Almighty should in an extraordinary and immediate Manner, give to any a Right to o­thers Possessions, there wou'd be Need of infallible and immediate Revelation, to assure us of this Mat­ter; nor could we safely act before it, in either of of the above Instances.

But there is no Need of immediate Revelation, to inform or assure us of these civil Rights, or civil Authority, which are convey'd to us in an ordinary Channel, we are apt to know them full well with­out.

Nor need we any new Revelation to inform us of a Truth that is engraven with indelible Charac­ters upon our rational Natures, as with the Point of a Diamond, and written with a Sun-beam upon a great Variety of Pages in the sacred Volume; namely, That we should defend ourselves and Properties.

Nor do we need a new Revelation to instruct us, when to prepare for, and endeavour the aforesaid Defence, the Providence of God, together with our own Reason, will easily, when attended to, point out the Time, as they do in other temporal Cases.

As to our Author's hard Construction upon these Words, 'Only Barrier,' in my Sermon, p. 5. V. [Page 50] p. 17. and the Use he is pleased to make of it, I shall only say, that the aforesaid Errata of the Press, in leaving out the Word Sometimes, our Author may see corrected by the Press in divers of the [...]e; the Sentence in the original Manuscript runs thus; 'Which is sometimes the only Barrier;' but if the aforesaid Word hadn't been corrected, our Author might easily know, from the Series of the Discourse, my Meaning to be only this, That sometimes Self-defence is the only human or outward Barrier against Injustice and Violence; now seeing the Law of Cha­rity oblig'd him to put the most favourable Sense upon the Words that they can in Reason bear, I leave it to the Reader to judge, whether such Ma­nagement be a Commendation of our Author's Cause or Candour.

But to proceed; my Opponent mentions another Paragraph of the Sermon, p. 15. Vin. p. 18. which is this;

‘It is strange to think, and hard to reconcile it with any just Notion of divine Goodness, that Almighty God, shou'd under this last and brightest Dispensation of his Grace towards the Children of Men, instead of enlarging diminish our Priviledges, and that in so tender and impor­tant a Point! Indeed, methinks such a Notion tends to cast a dishonourable and inglorious Re­flection upon the divine Benignity and Goodness; and the most illustrious Display of it, that was e­ver given to the Children of Men, by the Gos­pel of our Lord Jesus Christ.’

Upon which he remarks as follows; V. p. 18. ‘What Priviledges are here meant, those of Fight­ing for our Possessions, gaining Riches, enjoying Estates, &c. Tho' Riches acquired by honest Means, may not be inconsistent with the Doc­trines of Christ; and tho' we may possess in the [Page 51] World many near and dear Enjoyments, yet Christ and his Testimony ought to be preferred a­bove all Things, if we would render ourselves ac­ceptable in his Sight, Luke xiv. 26.’

To which I reply, that there are these following Blemishes in the aforesaid Paragraph, as I appre­hend; namely,

1. A Misrepresentation of the Point in Debate; here it is hinted as if what I was contending for, was, in Part, gaining Riches, which implies an Offensive War; now this was expresly guarded against, in stating the Question in the Beginning of the Ser­mon, in the Negative there mentioned.

2. A begging the Question in Controversy, which shou'd be proved; for he here takes that for grant­ed, which I deny; namely, That the Doctrine of absolute Non-resistance, is the Testimony of Christ; and then reasons upon it, to the Terror of the Igno­rant, which is very unfair.

3. By the Application of Luke xiv. 26. to his Purpose, he makes the Doctrine of absolute Non-resistance, or the Neglect of one outward Mean for Self-defence, one Term of Christianity; insinuating, that one can't be a Disciple of Christ without it, or true Christians, and resign'd to the Will of God, which is very uncharitable!

4. He shifts the State of the Question, which is not whether God can make us comfortable in those common Afflictions, which we are liable to, consider'd as private Men, by the Course of Providence; or which we may suffer as Christians upon a religious Account, which is term'd Persecution: But whe­ther as a State or Community we shou'd endeavour to defend ourselves by Force, when Necessity re­quires, against a foreign Foe, who endeavour to rob us of our Goods and Lives, under no religious Pre­text?

[Page 52]The next Particular that our Author considers, is what I have said, S. p. 15, 16. which is this; ‘Why, my Brethren, should it be now a Sin to perform (in respect of Things of a moral Nature) that which was under the Jewish Dispensation a Sin to neglect? Was not Meroz exposed to a bitter Curse, because she came not to help the Lord against the Mighty? i. e. as appears by the Context, Be­cause they came not to assist their Brethren engaged in Battle in a good Cause. Is not God the same as formerly, and the Nature of Justice and Injustice the same? Did not the Jews live under the same moral Law that we are to be governed by? And had they not the same Gospel for Substance?’

Upon which our Author remarks in the following Manner, Vind. p. 20.

‘The first of these Questions I really think not applicable to the Point in Dispute; because there is not any Part of the moral Law which enjoins War: And the Reason why Meroz was so severely cursed, Poole says, was to shew the Sinfulness and Unreasonableness of their cowardly Desertion of this Cause, because it was the Cause of God; and they had the Call of God to it, whom they knew to be able easily to crush that Enemy whom they dreaded, and who had promised to do it: So that upon this View of the Case, there is this only pro­ved by the Parallel, That it is a Sin to neglect going to War in the Cause of God, when he calls to it: This, therefore, cannot at all operate against those who refuse Fighting, because they apprehend God hath forbidden it.’

To which I reply, by offering the following Par­ticulars to the Reader's Consideration.

1. That our Author begs the Question in Debate; namely, That not any Part of the moral Law en­joins War. Whether a Defensive War be not implied [Page 53] in, and consequently enjoined by the sixth Command, I leave to the Reader to determine, after a View of the Reasonings I have before offered upon that Head, together with what is said in the Sermon to the same Purpose upon the fifth Command, p. 15, 16, 17, which our Author has thought proper not to meddle with, for what Reasons he knows best.

2. My Opponent, in the aforesaid Paragraph, re­ally, as I conceive, gives up the Cause for which he contends; for he acknowledges that this is proved by the Parallel of Meroz, namely, ‘That it is a Sin to neglect going to War in the Cause of God, when he calls to it.’

And only endeavours to screen himself from the Consequence of the aforesaid Concession, by this slender Pretext, namely, ‘This cannot at all operate against those that refuse fighting, because they ap­prehend God hath forbidden it.’ This Argument I have before considered—to which I refer the Read­er, and shall only add a few Words, together with the Sentiment of Grotius upon this Head.

The aforesaid Pretext or Apology, directly tends, so far as I can see, intirely to overthrow all the in­trinsick or inward Goodness or Badness of human Ac­tions, and consequently to make both Scripture and Reason a mere Nose of Wax!

Grotius, speaking of just Wars, observes, that they are in holy Writ called Battles of the Lord, 1 Sam. xvii. 47. The Israelites, saith he, under the Conduct of Moses and Joshua, having by Force of Arms repelled the Amalekites, who attacked them, Exod. xvii. GOD approved of the Conduct of his People, tho' he had given no Orders upon that Head before the Action. And farther, God himself prescribed to his People certain general and established Rules of making War, Deut. xx. 10, 15. thereby plainly shewing, that War might [Page 54] sometimes be just, even without a special Command from God; for there he makes a manifest Diffe­rence between the Case of those seven Nations, and that of other People: And seeing he does not de­clare the just Reasons of making War, he hereby supposes, that they may be easily discovered by the Light of Nature: Such was the Cause of the War made by Jephtha against the Ammonites, in Defence of their Borders, Judges xi.’ But,

3. From Mr. Poole's Annotations upon the Case of Meroz, which I had not cited in my Sermon, nor don't remember I had read, our Author is pleased to take Occasion to reflect under the Mar­gin, Vind. p. 20. upon many of the People of my Profession, as cowardly, ‘when many of the same Profession with this Sermon-writer hid themselves.’

To which I reply, that it seems something strange and extraordinary in this Gentleman's Conduct, who appears as a Patron for the Doctrine of absolute Non-Resistance, that he should not only enter into an Offensive War with me, and slight me unpro­voked, but likewise cast Scandal and Reproach upon many Persons, whom I have the Honour of being related to by Profession, who were long since dead, and in their Graves, and so could not possibly offend him .

I do declare, that I had it not in the Thoughts of my Heart, to offer any Charge against the People of his Profession about Cowardice, and therefore was not a little surprized to meet with our Author's Animad­versions upon this Head!

But seeing this Gentleman is pleased to insinuate a Charge of Cowardice against many of the same Pro­fession with me (and brings some Authors of his own [Page 55] Perswasion to prove it) I would only observe in their Vindication, that the Instance alledged of their hid­ing themselves (in a Time of Persecution, is no Proof of it; forasmuch as it is but agreeable to the Direc­tion of our Lord Jesus, who counsels his Disciples, when they are persecuted in one City, to fly to ano­ther.

And pray, have not divers of both our Profes­sions actually done so (for Substance) at the Time of the first Settlement of this Country? Did they not fly from their native Soil on Canvas Wings a­cross the great Atlantick, to this then howling Ame­rican Wilderness, in order to find a secure Retreat, from the Tempest of Persecution?

Is this Instance of our Author's Conduct calm and consistent? I will assure him, that the Sermon he is displeased with, was not framed to serve the narrow and comparatively mean Designs of a Party, but to promote the common Benefit of all the Societies of the Province, in their Protection from impending Danger and Calamity!

But to proceed: Our Author, in order to recon­cile God's commanding War, under the Old Testa­ment, to his (supposed) prohibiting it now, proposes this Expedient, Vind. p. 20.21. namely, he ‘be­seeches his Readers to remember, that he suffered and required many Things of the Jews, because of the Hardness of their Hearts, which was not to continue in his Church, after the bright Discovery of his Gospel was manifested.—Is it therefore rea­sonable to suppose, that this universal, glorious De­sign, admits of War and Fighting, especially be­tween such Nations as profess to be under the Go­vernment of the same Lord and Lawgiver?’

Now, in order to shew that the aforesaid Expedi­ent will not answer his Design, I shall first mention Mr. Poole's Interpretation of the Place of Scripture [Page 56] his Words refer to, namely, Mat. xix. 8. where Christ saith, Moses, because of the Hardness of your Hearts, suffered you to put away your Wives, but from the Beginning it was not so.

Poole observes thus upon the aforesaid Words: ‘The Substance of our Saviour's Answer seemeth to be this, Moses gave you no positive Command in the Case, he could not make a Law directly opposite to the Law of my Father. But Moses saw the Wantonness and Wickedness of your Hearts, that you wou'd turn away your Wives without any just or warrantable Cause; and to restrain your Extravagance of Cruelty to your Wives, or disor­derly turning of them off, upon any Occasion, he made a Law that none should put away his Wife, but upon a legal Cognizance of the Cause, and gi­ving her a Bill of Divorce: And you by your Traditions have expounded that Law beyond Mo­ses his Intention, and made a Bill of Divorce, grantable in Cases which he never tho't of, nor in­tended in that Law: But the Measures of Law­fulness, are neither to be taken from Moses his temporary Toleration, and much less from your Traditions and Expositions of the Law of Moses, but from the original Institution of Marriage, and from God's original Law in Relation to it.’ The above Exposition of the Place, I apprehend to be just and genuine.

I wou'd therefore observe, that the Author of the V. goes upon a wrong Foundation in the aforesaid Paragraph; and hence his Superstructure cannot be good. He saith that HE, meaning GOD, for of him he speaketh, as will appear to every Eye, by the Connection of these Words with the foregoing Part [Page 57] of the Paragraph, suffered and required many Things; but Christ saith it was Moses that suffered, not requi­red, the Jews to put away their Wives, which was but one Thing; this is a strange complicated Mis­take.

It is admirable that our Author shou'd ascribe to God by Way of Command (for does'nt the Word Required signify as much) what was only a tempo­rary Permission of Moses, and thus contradict our Saviour's express Declaration, in no less than three Particulars at one Dash; but I hope it was thro' Inadvertency that our Author fell into this unhappy Mistake, and that when he considers the Matter far­ther, he will correct it.

In the mean Time, can it be tho't, with the least Shadow of Reason, that from such a Foundation, any good Conclusion can be drawn against Defensive War, which GOD the Father, and GOD the Son, repeatedly commanded, approved of, and encou­raged with their Presence and Blessing .

It is likewise probable that our Author meant al­so the Jewish Ceremonies, but these Things being Shadows of Christ, must of Consequence expire and evanish, when the Sun the Substance came; but where is there any Ground to believe, that War is a Type of Christ; and if so, wou'dn't it conclude what my Opponent doesn't like, namely, that Christ is an eminent Warrior, seeing that the Type is eminently included in the Antitype.

Farther, the Jewish Sacrifices and Ceremonies, were Things in themselves indifferent and innocent, antecedent to, or before the divine Precepts concern­ing them, and therefore might by divine Sovereignty be for a Time enjoined, without any Contradiction to the Purity and other moral Perfections of the divine Nature; but the Case is not so as to War, it can be [Page 58] no Matter of Indifferency in itself, for it consists not in the shedding the Blood of Beasts, but of Men; and therefore if it be not morally Good, it is morally EVIL in itself, before the divine Precept respecting it: Else there is no such Thing in any Instance, and all Virtue and Vice are empty Names, and meer Cyphers, that have no Foundation in the Nature of Things; and thus the very Basis of all Virtue and Religion is sapp'd: A doleful Stroke indeed!

For what can more deeply concern the Manners of Men, than the taking away the human Life? Which puts a final Period to our State of Trial, and fixes unalterably our everlasting Condition: Hence one of these two Things follows, either that God Almighty commanded, encouraged and ap­proved of frequently, what is in itself morally Evil, or else that Defensive War is in its own Nature, mo­rally Good, and consequently lawful now.

As to the latter Part of the aforesaid Paragraph, I answer in the Affirmative; that it is, in my Appre­hension, reasonable to suppose, that the universal glorious Design of the Gospel-Dispensation admits of Defensive War and Fighting, when Necessity requires, even between Nations that profess to be under the Government of the same Lord and Lawgiver, for these Reasons;

1. Because it is under the aforesaid Limitations morally Good, as, I hope, appears from what has been already said. And,

2. Because being so, it cannot of itself have a Tendency to Contention or Confusion, or any Thing that is Evil; what is Good, cannot in itself tend to what is bad; except it be supposed that a Cause produces Effects contrary in Kind to itself; which is absurd, and contrary to the very Nature of Things! For thus, upon this Hypothesis, [Page 59] Light would produce Darkness, and Darkness Light.

Nay, it is so far from this, that the Doctrine of Defensive War directly tends to keep the worst of Men from Injustice and Violence, by affecting their Fear, with a View of the Penalties they are like to incur thereby; this tends to teach Men Wisdom, as pious Gideon taught the Men of Succoth, with the Briars and Thorns of the Wilderness.

Whereas the contrary Opinion, by removing the Arguments of Fear and Terror from the Impeni­tent, which generally have the most Influence to re­strain them from the Evils they love, tends to give an ungovernable Loose to their Passions and Appe­tites, and so opens a Door to Violence and Confusi­on, and every evil Work, and therefore in the pre­sent degenerate State of Mankind, it is of dangerous and pernicious Consequence!

Not to add that this Method of affecting the Fear of Men, by the threatning of Punishment against Transgressors, proportioned to their Crimes, and of inflicting it when there is Occasion, and in this Way endeavouring to deter them from Iniquity; I say this is the very Method which the blessed God himself takes with Mankind, in his Word written, and by his Providence, of which there are innume­rable Instances; Doesn't the Almighty hedge up frequently the Way of Sinners with Thorns, to keep them within proper Bounds? Does'n't the allwise God in the holy Scriptures denounce Threatnings of temporal Punishments, against Transgressors? And doesn't he at Times inflict them, and therefore from hence, may he not be justly called even now, A Man of War? And does it not easily follow, from what has been said under this Head, that all such who oppose a just War as unlawful under the Gos­pel, do consequently (tho' I trust not designedly) [Page 60] reflect upon the Wisdom of God's Government over the Children of Men, and labour to make us unlike our Maker, imagining that the Perfection of Christi­anity consists in this Instance, in our being unlike God; a strange Sort of Perfection indeed! For my Part, I cannot but think that JEHOVAH is the Foun­tain and Pattern of all Excellency, and that the Per­fection of intelligent Creatures, consists in Conformi­ty to him; but it seems our Author is in this Instance of a different Opinion!

3. Another Reason why I think the Design of the Gospel Dispensation admits of Defensive War and Fighting is, because the Jewish Church enjoyed the Gospel as well as we, the very same for Substance, as I have proved at large in the 16 p. of the Sermon, and in the Appendix, which he has tho't proper not to meddle with, for what Reason he knows best!

Our Author proceeds to cite another Paragraph of the Sermon, p. 16.

‘Can we think, my Brethren, that God would enjoin and approve of any Practice formerly, that was contrary to the moral Law and Gospel, which the Jews enjoy'd? Surely No! That is contrary to his unalterable Purity, of which the moral Law is a legible Copy and Exemplar. Well, if a just War was not contrary to the moral Law under the Jewish Dispensation, and before it, why should it be so now, in the like Circumstances of Necessity? And if it be not contrary to the moral Law, the standing and unalterable Rule of our Conduct, why should any scruple it, or oppose it now?’

Upon which our Author remarks as follows (V. p. 21)

‘I have already observed, that the Almighty's enjoining and approving of some Wars formerly, does not authorize any Wars begun and carried on at the mere Will and Pleasure of Men. The like [Page 61] Circumstances of Necessity must be, when we have the divine Command and Direction, and not other­wise. If it be a Doubt why the dark and distant Prospects of the Gospel, which the Jews had, did not discover to them in general, that the Time should come when outward War should be laid aside, the same Difficulty recurs with respect to Sacrifices, Burnt-Offerings, Circumcision, &c. and yet some of the inspired Prophets foresaw that Time. If it be objected, that Sacrifices, &c. were Types and Figures; so, in my Opinion, were the outward Wars and Fightings of the Jews, and are considered in that Light, by reli­gious Writers of many Denominations. That the moral Law is the standing and unalterable Rule of our Conduct; I grant as far as it reaches: But it is not from thence that a Scruple about Fighting arises. The blessed Jesus hath taught some Chris­tians, both by the immediate Dictates of his Spi­rit, and the Expressions of his Will, when perso­nally upon Earth, that the best Way to keep the Commandments, Thou shalt not kill, and Thou shalt love thy Neighbour, is not to harbour any Ill-will or Revenge against any, but to love Ene­mies, &c.

To which I reply, That our Author in the pre­ceding Paragraph,

1. Shifts the Question in Controversy; I never pretended to defend War, begun and carried on at the meer Will and Pleasure of Men, or according to their Humours and corrupt Lusts: No!

2. He gives a wrong Turn to those Words, 'The like Circumstances of Necessity,' contrary to their natural and usual Acceptation, as if they signi­fied the Time when we have an immediate Command (such as the Jews had in some Instances by the Urim) he must mean this, or say nothing to his Purpose▪ [Page 62] whereas the Words only signify our being in the like Danger or Distress!

No doubt we shou'd consult the holy Scriptures in our Wars, which contain our standing Rule of Conduct, and consider God's Providences towards us, and pray to him for Direction, and in this Way we may expect to know the Mind of God as well as the Jews did by the Urim and Thummim; nor did they in all Cases consult that Oracle, but in difficult only; When they heard that the Two Tribes and a Half had built an Altar by Jordan, the whole Congregation gathered themselves together at Shiloh, to War against them; but so far as we can learn, did not consult the Urim, Josh. xxii. 12. So like­likewise in that War undertaken against the Tribe of Benjamin, Jud. xx. they only enquired who should go up first, v. 18. tho' after a Defeat they change the Question.

3. Our Author puts Sacrifices, Burnt-Offerings and Circumcision upon a Par with Defensive War, and believes them to be Types and Figures; but of­fers only his own Opinion, as the Foundation of this Argument, together with the Opinion of other religious Writers, which are no Proof to me.

To imagine that the Jewish Wars were Figures and Types of the spiritual Wars of Christians against Sin and Satan, as it wants a scriptural Foundation, so it is attended with this Absurdity, viz. It either supposes that the pious Jews had no spiritual War, which is false; or else that the Type and Thing ty­pified (for Substance) existed together, which is ab­surd! Besides if Defensive War be not in itself lawful, it is Murder; and methinks its hard to imagine, that a holy and merciful God, shou'd make a Type of Murder!

Why should it be supposed, that War is any Part of the ceremonial Law, or Law peculiarly given to [Page 63] the Jews, seeing it obtained before that Dispensati­on, as appears by Abram's Battle?

But if it be for Argument sake suppos'd, will our Author say that it is lawful in any Case, to offer Sa­crifices under the Gospel? And where do we find that ever Circumcision was permitted to the Gen­tiles?

4. He asserts in other Words, that the moral Law is imperfect; he grants indeed that it is an unalterable Rule of our Conduct, as far as it reaches; this insi­nuates that it doesn't reach far enough; and this in­deed he elsewhere signifies, p. 44. but adds to it (i. e. to the moral Law) Love your Enemies— Now the aforesaid Assertion is contrary to the ex­press Declaration of the holy Scriptures, Psal. xix. 7, 8. The Law of the Lord is perfect, converting the Soul.

5. Our Author also insinuates, in the aforesaid Paragraph, that Love to Enemies, and not harbour­ing Ill-will or Revenge against any, are Precepts materially new, given by our Saviour when person­ally upon Earth, and inconsistent with Defensive War. To which

I reply, That these Duties were expresly com­manded under the Jewish Dispensation, and there­fore are not new Precepts (materially) See those fa­mous Scriptures, Prov. xxv. 2. If thine Enemy be hungry, give him Bread to eat; and if he be thirsty, give him Water to drink: By Bread and Water, says Mr. Poole, he understands all Things necessary for his Subsistence; and likewise Exod. xxiii. 4. If thou meet with thine Enemy's Ox or Ass going astray, thou shalt surely bring it back to him again. ‘So far (saith Mr. Poole upon this Scripture) shalt thou be from revenging his Injuries, that thou shalt render Good to him for them.’

[Page 64]Now seeing the Almighty commanded both Love to Enemies and Defensive War under the Jewish Dispensation, then either they can consist toge­ther, or God commanded inconsistent Things at the same Time; but seeing the latter is absurd, and conveys a horrible Notion of the blessed God as an un­reasonable Being! the former must therefore be true.

Farther, let it be observed, that Love to our Neighbours as ourselves, was as expresly enjoin­ed under the Jewish Dispensation as now: See Levit. xix. 18. Thou shalt love thy Neighbour as thy self, I am the Lord; and therefore it is consistent with Defensive War, for that was at the same Time enjoined, or else the aforesaid absurd and terrible Consequence will follow, viz. That God com­manded contrary Things at the same Time!

Moreover Revenge was as expresly forbid under the Jewish Dispensation, as under the Gospel; see Lev. xix. 18. Thou shalt not avenge or bear any Grudge against the Children of thy People; Prov. xxiv. 28, 29. Be not a Witness against thy Neighbour, without Cause—Say not I will do to him as he hath done to me, I will render to the Man according to his Work. Hence one of two Things necessarily follows; ei­ther that private Revenge is a Thing different from, and contrary to Defensive War, or that Almighty God both commanded and forbid the same Thing at the same Time; for while he forbad Revenge, he commanded Defensive War; the Absurdity of which every Eye may see!

Meer REVENGE, which proposes no Aim but the Grief or Destruction of him who hath hurt us, is contrary to the Law of Nature §, the moral Law [Page 65] of God and the Gospel of Christ; inasmuch as it falls under the Vice of Cruelty, and is inconsistent with Love.

But the Case of the Magistrate in the Execution of Criminals, is quite different, as I observed in the S. p. 32. ‘He loves them as Fellow Creatures, and compassionates their Miseries from a Principle of Humanity; and yet in the mean Time he must put them to Death, not out of personal Revenge, but to promote Justice and the good Ends of Go­vernment. And thus it is in respect of Self-de­fence and War, the Law of Nature directs to fly thereto, as the last Remedy, of Necessity, S. p. 10. The Severities exercis'd thereby, should be only when the Case comes to Extremity, and our own Safety absolutely requires it, and only then as far as it does require it, and that with Reluc­tance and Compassion, S. p. 29.’ So that a pri­vate Desire of Revenge, is neither the Principle that animates Defensive War, nor the Scope to which it is directed; but a just Regard to God's commanding Authority, is the Source from which it springs, and the Protection of our own, as well as our dear Rela­tives Persons and Properties, from unjust Violence, is the End to which it tends, and in which it termi­nates!

So that Execution of Justice upon Criminals by the Magistrate, either after an ordinary Course of Trial, or by the extraordinary Method of Defensive War, is called Revenge only improperly, and in a large Sense; because of the Effect thereof, which somewhat resembles it. But in the mean Time it differs as much in its Principle and End, from what is strictly and properly called Revenge, as Light from Darkness, and therefore can consist with Love: The due Consideration of these Things, wou'd [Page 66] prevent our being imposed upon, by a meer Sound of harsh Words.

Our Author next proceeds to a Paragraph in the Sermon, p. 20. with which the 18 and 19 p. have a Connection, which seeing he has tho't proper, per­haps for prudential Reasons, to give but a brief Hint of, I will take the Liberty to cite more large­ly, as follows:

‘And should not the Magistrate protect his Subjects from unjust Violence? Is not this the Design of their Office, that under them we may live quiet Lives, and that they may be to us a Hiding-place from the Wind, and a Covert from the Tempest of Op­pression! Why else is the Sword committed to them, and can they always protect us without War, with­out opposing Force to Force? No surely!’

‘Now unless the Magistrate punishes Criminals in his own Community, and screens his Subjects from a foreign Force, what is his Office but an empty Name, a meer Cypher, of no Moment and Consequence to Society? Nor is it reasonable he should expect Support, Honour and Obedience, from his Subjects, if they in Consequence hereof, do not obtain Pro­tection from him. In the mean Time it should be carefully observed, that the Magistrate's Office, and consequently the Duties of it, does not belong to the political Laws of the Jews, which were alterable, but to the M [...]rel, which was invariable and per­petual. Surely by the Word PARENT in the Fifth COMMAND, we are not only to understand natu­ral, but political Parents; the MAGISTRATE is the FATHER of his COUNTRY by OFFICE, and then only indeed does he merit that honourable Character, and act up to it, when by forming and executing wholsome penal Laws, he suppres­ses Injustice among his Children, when by prudent and necessary Preparations, and when Necessity [Page 67] requires, by vigorous and valiant Efforts, he guards them from a foreign Enemy!

‘If the Magistrate may, and sometimes must use Force in suppressing Tumults, and punishing De­linquents in his own Domains, and among his pro­per Subjects, else all Order and Government must cease, and th [...] wildest Anarchy ensue; why then may he not use Force, when easier Methods avail not, in protecting them from the Insults of o­thers? May he according to the express Word of God, punish his criminal Subjects with Death, in some Cases, agreeable to that famous Scripture, He that sheds Man's Blood, by Man shall his Blood be shed; and shall he not inflict it upon others equal­ly guilty, especially when this becomes necessary to defend himself and his Country from Desolation and Ruin? Can it be reasonably imagined, that a Magistrate should shew greater Love and Cle­mency to Foreigners and Strangers, than to his own Sons and Subjects, to whom he is under pe­culiar Obligations, both natural and political?’

‘Nor has our Lord Jesus, in the New-Testa­ment, disanulled the Magistrate's Office, which is so needful to Society; No! But on the contrary honoured and establish'd it, by his Doctrine and Example; he enjoined his Disciples, To give to Caesar the Things that are Caesar's, to give Honour to whom Honour is due, and Tribute to whom Tribute; to be subject to the higher Powers, and that for this Reason, because there is no Power but of God, and the Powers that be, are ordained of God; and he himself paid Tribute, yea rather than this important Duty should be neglected, he procured Money by a Miracle.

Now let us hear how our Author answers to the aforesaid Argument, which I look upon to be the Chief that I have offered, upon which the whole [Page 68] Cause very much rests; his Answer is as follows (V. p. 22, 23)

Upon which I remark, that whenever the Ma­gistrate is convinced that the Doctrines of Christ forbid War, it will be as much his Duty, as any other Man's, to render Obedience to those Doc­trines. However the People called Quakers, do not undertake to condemn their Superiors engaging in War, in the present unhappy State of human Af­fairs: We rather think it probable, that as they have shewn a noble and Christian Disposition, in granting Liberty and Protection to such as are of tender Consciences, it may please God to bless their Arms with Success, and reward them for their Kindness to his People, who desire to live in Obe­dience to the inward Appearance of his Spirit, which leads to Purity and Perfection: And agree­able to the Advice of the Apostle Paul, we find it our Duty, to put up Prayers for Kings, and them that are in Authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable Life, in all Godliness and Honesty, 1 Tim. ii. 1, 2.

To which I reply,

1. That if it be the Magistrate's Duty, to render Obedience to the Doctrines that forbid War, when convinced, then he must either quit his Office, or bear the Sword, the Ensign of it, in vain; for in this Way, the End of that Institution cannot be answered; but the latter is absurd; namely, to carry an empty Title, a Name without the Thing, and therefore the former must take Place; and hence it follows, That if all Magistrates were con­vinced as aforesaid, they must all, wou'd they act with Decency and Consistency, quit their Places, and then there wou'd be no Government at all! Doesn't therefore this Doctrine of absolute Non-Re­sistance destroy Magistracy at a Stroke? And thus this [Page 69] Gentleman, as usual, gives up his Cause in Effect! But,

2. Why doesn't our Author answer to my Ar­gument from the fifth Command, in favour of the Magistrate's Office, which I signified in the Sermon shou'd be carefully observed? Is it included or not, in that Precept? Why doesn't our Author speak out his Mind plainly? Is it the Magistrate's Duty to protect his Subjects or not? If nay, then his Of­fice is a meer Bubble, which only deserves to be laugh'd at; if yea, then Defensive War is included in the moral Law, and consequently is lawful now; unless it be suppos'd, that the Gospel opposes and destroys the moral Law, which as it is contrary to the express Declaration of Christ himself, elsewhere cited in this Reply, so it tends to tear up by the Roots all Virtue and Religion, at one dismal Dash!

If our Author had faulted any Part of the prece­ding Train of Reasonings about the Magistracy, he should have declared it; but seeing he has not, his Silence gives Consent to the whole, which therefore concludes to the Overthrow of his Cause!

3. Our A [...]thor informs us, ‘That the People called Quakers, do not undertake to condemn their Superiors engaging in War, in the present unhappy State of human Affairs.’

Well, if they don't condemn them, they justify them; for there is no Medium, unless the Mind be in Suspence and undetermin'd on which Side of the Question Truth and Duty lies; and if they justify their Superiors engaging in War, they cannot consist­ently condemn Inferiors that war under them, see­ing that Princes cannot war without Soldiers. But our Author proceeds to inform us,

2. That the Quakers hope for God's Blessing upon the Arms of their Superiors; ‘We rather think it probable, that as they have shewn a noble and [Page 70] Christian Disposition, in granting Liberty and Protection to such as are of tender Consciences, it may please GOD to BLESS their ARMS with SUC­CESS. Now surely if they believed all War was unlawful, they wou'dn't, one wou'd think, ex­pect God's Blessing upon it. They justly com­mend the Liberty granted by the Government to tender Consciences, I join with them with all my Heart, and bless God for it, and pray that it wou'd please that Sovereign Majesty, by whom Kings reign, and Princes decree Justice, to continue it to the latest Generations even while Sun and Moon endure! I cannot but look upon Liberty of Consci­ence, and Protection therein, in Matters of a religi­ous Nature, to be the unalienable Right of all Man­kind, and the peculiar Glory of the present Reign! But,

3. The People called Quakers (as our Author informs us) pray for the Blessing aforesaid, for ha­ving before in the same Paragraph signified their not condemning of their Superiors engaging in War, and having expressed their Hopes of a divine Blessing up­on their Arms, he tells us they crown all with their Prayers for such as are in Authority, and that for this Purpose, that they may live a quiet and peaceable Life; i. e. That by the Exercise of their Sovereign's Authority in Arms, accompanied with the Blessing of God, the Enemies of our Peace may be repress'd, and our Quiet restored upon a firm and honourable Basis; this I take to be the true Sense of the Para­graph in its Connection, without the least Strain.

This is wholesome Doctrine indeed, with which I cordially concur, and am glad to have such a Testi­mony in favour of the late excellent ASSOCIATION; in the mean Time allow me to propose the follow­lowing Queries; namely,

[Page 71] Query 1. If this be the Quaker's Sentiments, do they not firmly hold the Lawfulness of Defensive War under the Gospel?

Query 2. Then how comes our Author, who ap­pears under the Character of their Apologist (before an Attack) to contradict them so much in his pre­sent Performance? In his Preface he declares, that War is absolutely forbid by the Doctrines of Christ; ‘I thought, says he, the Sermon was to prove that agreeable to the Doctrines of Christ, which is abso­lutely forbid thereby.’ Now, what was the Scheme of the Sermon to prove but Defensive War? The Title and whole Frame of it shew this. And V. p. 23. he calls it an Evil, an Apostacy from the Life and Spirit of Christ, a forsaking of the Simplicity of the Gospel; his Words are these; ‘Thus the Simplici­ty of the Gospel being forsook for worldly Pomp and Power, instead of the loving and forgiving Temper, which it enjoined, it was misconstrued to allow of Violence and Oppression in this Apo­stacy from the Life and Spirit of Christ; many Evils which the primitive Christians were redeem­ed from, come to be reckoned necessary and ex­pedient; and, speaking of the primitive Friends, he says, they were convinced by the Spirit of the Sinfulness of War.’

Yea, so great is the Evil supposed to be, that our Author informs us, Vind. p. 3. That such who hold it doctrinally, are to be excluded from Church Fellowship; ‘And they esteem it, saith he, their Duty to testify, that such are not in Unity with them, who, making Profession of this inward Principle, manifest a Conduct contrary to it.’ If so,

Query 3. How can he or they forbear condem­ning so great a Wickedness, as he represents War of all Kinds to be, if they are of the same Opinion with him? And much more, how can a Blessing [Page 72] from God be expected upon what is supposed to be an abominable Iniquity, and that Blessing prayed for? I profess, it surpasses the Reach of my Understand­ing, to reconcile these Things together!

Query 4. Is there no Appearance (at least) of great Uncharitableness in the aforesaid Paragraph, in confining Persons of tender Consciences, and true Christianity, to the narrow Pale of the Quaker So­ciety, or peculiar Principles? To his People, who de­sire to live in Obedience to the inward Appearance of his Spirit, which leads to Purity and Perfection? Now, who can we understand by those Terms a­greeable to our Author's Vind. but such as are for immediate Inspiration, and against Defensive War? Isn't Gratitude expressed for Liberty granted to those, and to no others; and a Hope of Success upon our So­vereign's Arms, grounded alone upon that Founda­tion? Isn't this strange and hard to account for?

But, blessed be God, whatever our Author may imagine to the contrary, Christ's Sheep are not cooped up in one Fold, but scattered in many; we have Reason to rejoice that the Lord is to be our Judge, and not short sighted Creatures.

Here I would beg Leave to transcribe the Senti­ment of the learned Grotius upon that famous Scrip­ture cited by our Author, 1 Tim. ii. 1, 2, 3. I ex­hort therefore, that first of all Supplications, Pray­ers, Intercessions, be made for all Men; for Kings, and all in Authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable Life in all Godliness and Honesty. For this is GOOD AND ACCEPTABLE IN THE SIGHT OF GOD OUR SAVIOUR. Hence, saith Grotius, ‘We are taught three Things; 1. That it is pleasing to God that Kings should become Christians. 2. That being converted to Christianity they still continue Kings; which Justin Martyr thus expressed, We pray that Kings and Princes may, together with their royal [Page 73] Power, be found to have wise and reasonable Sen­timents. And in the Book intitled, The Con­stitutions of Clement, the Church prays, Christia­na ta tele, for Christian Magistrates. And 3. That it is acceptable to God that Christian Kings should contribute their utmost to the Quiet of others. But how he explains this in another Place, Rom. xiii. 4. He is the Minister of God to thee for Good; if thou do Ill, be afraid, for he beareth not the Sword in vain; for he is God's Minister, an Avenger to execute Wrath upon them that do Evil. Under the Right of the Sword is figuratively comprehended eve­ry sort of Punishment *.’

The next Particular taken notice of by my Oppo­nent, Mr. S. is what I have said upon the Counsel of John the Baptist to the Soldiers, S. p. 20. the Force of which he endeavours to evade by three Ex­ceptions. 1. He says, 'They were Roman Soldiers.' Answer, What then? Should not they be told their Duty for that Reason? 2. ‘If abstaining from War be the Perfection of the Christian Religion (says Mr. S. V. p. 23) that is a Point the most dif­cult to be learnt, is it likely or reasonable to ex­pect that John, upon the Pagan Soldiers first Ap­plcation, should declare that to them?’

Answer, Here our Author, as usual, begs the Question in Dispute. I deny abstaining from War totally to be any Point of Christianity at all; it is so far from a Perfection in it.

3. Mr. S. tells us what he would do. Answer, What is that to the Purpose? It is what he should do we enquire after, and not the other. If he would not reprove Men for what he reckons sinful, who can help that? Farther, he enquires, towards the Close of his Paragraph, p. 24. Can War subsist [Page 74] without Violence? Answer, Yes, without private Violence or Ravages. The Roman Laws, tho' they allowed Soldiers to take Prey from Enemies, yet did not permit the least Injury to Friends .

If these Words, do Violence to no Man, be con­sidered in a consistent View with the other Part of the Advice, to be content with their Wages, it can reasonably be supposed to mean no more, than to abstain from private Plunders and Ravages, an E­vil which Soldiers are at Times under strong Temp­tations to!

Or that they should beware of engaging in an un­just War, or of exercising Inhumanity and Cruelty towards those they conquered by a just One, seeing his advising them to be content with their Wages, is a tacite Approbation of that Work for which they received them.

The Abuses of War by some can be no just Ar­gument against the regular Use of it. It is true, it is attended with distressing Circumstances; but it is as true, that the utter Rejection of it, and being in­tirely passive under the Rage and Ravages of aban­doned Banditti, is much more so; and indeed this makes us criminal, as well as miserable!

Our Author next attacks my Argument from the Instance of the Centurion, S. p. 21. This he en­deavours to confute, V. p. 24, 25. The Grounds he goes upon are two, viz.

1. His usual begging of the Question in Controver­sy, he takes it for granted, that the Denial of every kind of War is a Point of Perfection in Christianity, which I absolutely deny; and upon this Foundation, which he has offered no Arguments in his whole Performance to establish, he proceeds farther to ob­serve, that our Lord knew the best Method to deal [Page 75] with frail Mortals, was to lead them by Degrees to Perfection.

Answer; This is not applicable to his Argument, unless he had first proved, that the rejecting of De­fensive War was a Point of Perfection.

2. He labours to divert the Force of my Argu­ment, by observing, that if the Sermon-writer could have proved, that after this Miracle, which our Lord wrought, that if the Centurion had retained his military Employ, there would have been some Foun­dation for my Argument.

I reply, it is a Mistake; an Argument of Right is vastly better than from Fact, in fallible, imperfect Creatures: I enquired what was his Duty to do, and not what he did; it is not by the Examples of Men, but by the Laws of God, that we should re­gulate our Conduct!

Besides, seeing our Author's Opinion supposes the Repeal of an established Practice, it is his Business to shew, that the Centurion did not retain his mili­tary Office: We do not find that Christ said a Word against his Continuance in it; No! but on the con­trary, he elsewhere commands to render to Cesar the Things that are Cesar's; among which was the TRI­BUTE MONEY, wherewith the SOLDIERS were SUP­PORTED. Now, if this had been simply unlawful, would CHRIST have enjoined it for that End, with­out Reproof, yea, and paid the Tribute Himself? Doesn't CHRIST'S PRECEPTS and PRACTICE, re­specting the TRIBUTE MONEY, plainly imply his Approbation of a just or Defensive War?

My Argument is not drawn from the Centuri­on's not laying down his Office, but from Christ's not enjoining him so to do.

The next Argument in the Sermon that Mr. S. is pleased to animadvert upon, is that from John xviii. 36. My Kingdom is not of this World, else [Page 76] would my Servants fight, that I should not be deliver­ed to the Jews, S. p. 22.

Our Author, to compass his End, cites Mr. Poole's Annotations on the Place; which, tho' they shew that it was not the Duty of Christ's Disciples to fight for his Protection, in his present extraordinary Situation, or to promote his spiritual Kingdom; yet they confirm the Point I had in View in my Ar­gument in these Words, viz. ‘For was there ever an earthly Prince apprehended and bound, for whom none of his Servants would take up Arms?

But Mr. S. desires me to consider, whether Christ's directing us to pray, That his Will may be done in Earth, as it is in Heaven, does not much more clearly express an Injunction to live in Love and Peace? I answer, Defensive War is consistent with Love, as I have before shewn; if not, what be­comes of the Magistrate? See this Matter opened in the Sermon, p. 31, 32. which it seems our Au­thor thought it prudent to pass over in Silence;—and is it not the Design of Defensive War to procure Peace by Constraint? Moreover, the Angels in Hea­ven are Warriors, as appears from the preceding Sermons!

Religion is one Thing, and human Society is ano­ther; the former is spiritual, the latter temporal; and therefore spiritual Weapons are suited in Nature and Kind to the one, and temporal to the other: How unreasonable is it therefore to suppose, that be­cause Christ's Reign in the Soul, which is a spiritual Thing, cannot be promoted or maintained by tem­poral Means (directly or immediately) that therefore a temporal Kingdom cannot, or should not be pro­moted, or preserved by them, under God, which are of the same Kind with it, and suited to it! This is just, in other Words, to say, Because that unsuit­able Means will not answer the End, therefore suit­able [Page 77] will not! According to the aforesaid plain Con­cession of our Lord, the Subjects of a temporal King may, and ought to fight, in the Defence of their King, their Country, and civil Privileges; and that for this Reason, because that Mean is suited to the End.

But to open this Matter a little more, let it be ob­served, that there are two notable Societies among Men, namely, Civil and Ecclesiastical; which, tho' they appear mixed and confused, because the same Persons are frequently Members of both, are not­withstanding distinct and different from each other; they tend to different Ends by different Means, and have respectively different Kinds of Power. The End of ecclesiastical or religious Society, is everlast­ing Happiness; but the End of civil Society, is the Peace and Safety of the State: These Ends being very different, it is no Wonder if the Means condu­cing to them be so likewise. To eternal Happiness none can come, except by an unconstrained and sin­cere Obedience to the divine Precepts, issuing from Faith and Love, which it is the great Business of Religion to promote: But, on the other hand, it is no Matter to the State, whether its Laws are o­bey'd freely or not; if they be but obey'd outwardly, it is enough; this Obedience it is their proper Busi­ness to procure, which may be effected by the Fear of Punishment and Death. In short, the Power of the State extends to Mens Bodies, but that of the Church respects the Soul: The former may, and therefore ought to be compelled to Obedience, thro' a Dread of Punishment and Death; but the latter cannot be forced by outward Violence; and therefore the Church can have no Power over it, nor reclaim Delinquents any other Way, but by Reproof, Counsel, Entreaty, and in case of persevering Obstinacy, de­clare them unworthy of their Communion. The Laws [Page 78] of civil Society respect the Peace and Good of the Commonwealth; but the Canons of Churches are de­signed to promote and preserve Purity of Doctrine, and Piety of Discipline. From these Principles it easily and clearly follows, that the Power of the Church is only spiritual, and the Power of the State only temporal.

Now our Lord Jesus by the Text aforesaid, plainly informs us, that he came not into the World to exercise the Power and Dominion of a temporal Prince; Augustine upon this Scripture speaketh thus, ‘Hear ye Jews and Gentiles, hear ye earthly King­doms, I hinder not your Domination or civil Rule in this World.’ Our Lord did not only by Words, but by Deeds declare, that he came not to assume a civil Authority over temporal Things, par­ticularly by his Flight, least he should be chose a King by the Jews, and also by his refusing to exer­cise the Office of a civil Judge upon their temporal Affairs; when he was entreated to divide an Inheri­tance, he reply'd, Man, Who made me a Judge or Divider over you? As if he had said, Go to those to whom that Power is committed; hence Ambrose, upon this Place, saith, ‘He justly declin'd intermed­dling in their temporal Affairs, who only descended to promote heavenly, nor did he think it proper to commence a Judge of their Debates .’

But I hasten to the next Argument (or rather Il­lustration of what has been reason'd upon before) which Mr. S. takes Notice of, viz. that of Corneli­us, Acts x. S. p. 23.

[Page 79]Upon which he asks this Question, 'Is Cornelius commended for his military Office?

Answer, No! I offered no such Argument, and therefore his Query is impertinent, but seems artful, and calculated to turn my Argument out of its pro­per Channel.

He observes that Cornelius had the Character of a devout Man—before he was instructed in the Prin­ciples of the Christian Religion.

Answer, It is true, he had the aforesaid Charac­ter, before he conversed with the Apostle Peter; but it is probable he was a Proselyte of the Jewish Religion (of the Gate) and believed in a Messias to come.

Whether he continued in his Office or not, is of little Consequence to this Argument, because that is a Matter of Fact of an imperfect Creature; but it is concerning Right we are to enquire, namely, whe­ther he cou'd, consistent with Christianity, continue in that Office! If his Office was sinful, it was Peter's Duty to instruct him better, and more especially, seeing he came to visit him upon that Design; but not a Word of this, tho' that Apostle was free e­nough to speak his Mind upon other Occasions.

Farther, Mr. Smith signifies his Dislike of my Interpretation of these Words of the Apostle Paul, If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peacea­bly with all Men, S. p. 23. and gives one himself, which has this uhappy Defect attending it, namely, a begging of the Question in Debate, as usual with him in this Controversy, V. p. 27. for in it are these Words, ‘Tho' some make War upon you, or try to disturb you, yet let nothing appear on your Side, but a meek and quiet Spirit; i. e. No Defence by Action, nothing but absolute passive Obedience, and Non-resistance.

[Page 80]Besides, Mr. Pool's Gloss, cited by our Author, upon that sacred Sentence of the Apostle, of, Over­coming Evil with Good, respects private Revenge, and is impertinent to the Point under Debate; there is a sweet Consistency between the Prohibition of private Revenge, and the Execution of publick by the Magistrate, as appears from the Sermon, p. 30. where Mr. Poole's Words, cited under the Margin, prove the Harmony.

Now it is somethtng strange to me, I confess, that our Author having had a View of those Words, which fairly and easily solve the Difficulty he starts, shou'd not only pass them over in intire Silence and Neglect, but introduce the Annotations of the same worthy and consistent Gentleman, in another Place, in such a Way, as seems to contradict himself, at least in the Eye of the unwary and unskilful Reader; and so use him as a Tool to promote a Cause he op­pos'd! Whether this Method of pr [...]ceeding is a good Specimen of his own Candour, or the Goodness of his Cause, I leave to the Determination of others; but for my own Part, I hope the best of his Design, and ascribe this odd Method of managing Controver­sy, either to Oversight, or the Difficulty of support­ing the Cause he is so zealous for, or both toge­ther.

To what has been said, allow me to add, that un­less the Words of the Apostle aforesaid, If it be possible, do not suppose that it is sometimes impossi­ble to live peaceably with Men, as the Sermon ob­serves, the Expression seems to be improper; there is a needless Supposition, without a Foundation to support it, altho' the Experience of all Ages, gives a doleful Suffrage to the Truth of the Matter of Fact, that there is too much Foundation for such a Supposition.

[Page 81]The next Particular that Mr. S. censures, is the Argument from Heb. xi. 32,—34. mentioned S. p. 23, 24. the Substance of which is, that the Apos­tle gives an honourable Encomium of the Prowess and Exploits of divers ancient Heroes, comp [...] by a Gospel-Faith, without the least Hint of an Alte­ration in Gospel-Times; hence it is concluded to be improbable, that he himself shou'd be of a contrary Sentiment, especially considering, that he virtually and consequentially signified his Approbation of War by his Practice in not rejecting the Protection of an armed Force.

Our Author answers in the following Mapper, V. p. 28, 29. ‘But where is the Difficulty? Does not the Apostle in the same Chapter commend the Faith of Abram in leaving his own Country, and offering up his only Son Isaac at the Command of God? Now will, or can this be construed to infer, t [...]at because Abram did these Things at the divine Command, and the Apostle don't give the l [...]ast Hint of any Alteration in Gospel Times, in the Respect, that therefore a Christian may f [...]ow that Example without such Command? And yet this Consequence is as fair, as to infer, that be­cause Gideon, &c. did go to War at the Com­mand of God—that therefore Christians may fol­low their Example without such Command.

‘The Reader will not find that Paul did so much as make any Application for the Protection of an armed Force, tho' he knew there was a Consp [...]cy form'd for the taking away his Life; he [...] the necessary Steps to inform the Chief Capt [...] in whose Custody he was) of that Design.

Our Author adds, ‘That Paul being a Prisoner, it would not be reasonable or prudent for him, supposing his Judgment had been clear again [...] t [...]e Lawfulness of War for Christians, to refuse being [Page 82] conducted by the Soldiers, whither their Superior had ordered them to take him.’

To which I reply, that there are the following Errata in the aforesaid Answer, which render it inconclusive, viz.

1. Our Author passes over in deep Silence, the aforesaid Worthies compassing their Victories by a Gospel Faith, upon which I laid the greatest Stress of the Argument, and from it reason'd thus, ‘Now can it be that that War shou'd be agreeable to, and encourag'd by Faith in the Messias, that grand Peculiar, and Foundation of the Gospel, and yet be contrary to it?’ This Omission of our Author, seems to be more cautious than candid.

2. He represents Defensive War, against the un­just Encroachments of an Enemy, and a Parent's killing an only Child, when done without immediate Revelation or Command, as of a parallel Nature, which is shocking indeed! Is Defensive War then as contrary to the Law of Nature and the moral Law, as a Parent's killing of an only Child, when done without immediate Command and Revelation? If the Case be so, then seeing the far greater Part of the World are for Defensive War, and pretend to no immediate Revelation, they are of Consequence look'd upon by our Author, as a Set of heinous MURDERERS, which is no great Expression of Cha­rity!

Was not God's Command to Abraham very ex­traordinary, and only for Trial, without Design of its being executed, and was this the Case of A­bram and the Jews in their Wars? The Conse­quence is therefore unjust, of the Necessity of an immediate Command, or new Revelation, for what is in itself morally good. If there must be a new Re­velation for every Battle, there must be the same al­so by a Parity of Reason, every Time before the [Page 83] Magistrate kills a Criminal, for the Object of his Faith must be Deus loquens; and what then must become of all publick Justice and Government? Must every Magistrate be inspir'd?

3. Our Author shews some Art in separating what I said of Paul's not refusing the Protection of an armed Force, from the preceding Argument, which it was join'd with in the same Paragraph, in order to support it; but in the mean Time, he is so unhappy as to contradict himself; for while he de­clares that Paul did not so much as make ANY AP­PLICATION for the Protection or an ARMED FORCE; yet he acknowledges, that he took the NECESSARY STEPS TO INFORM THE CHIEF CAP­TAIN OF THAT DESIGN, not doubting but he would have so much JUSTICE, as to prevent such a PRIVATE MURDER. But how as a Captain, but by Force? Our Author here acknowledges all that I intended by my Argument; I would there­forefore proceed to new Matter.

And that which comes first to be considered, is our Author's Remarks upon what I have said upon James iv. 1. S. p. 25. viz. ‘That the Apostle James does not say, that War is ever unjust and sinful upon both Sides, or unnecessary in Man's fallen State, but that the original Cause of War is Evil, because it is always unjust upon one Side!’

Upon which Mr. S. proposes the following Query, namely, ‘Can a true Christian then, who hath known the Ax laid to the Root of the Tree, i. e. the Spirit of God giving him Victory over Lust, join with, countenance, or encourage that which hath Lust for its Original?’

Ans. Not with Offensive War, which doubtless rises from that fatal Source, No! by no Means! but ought to oppose it in Words and Works; not [Page 84] only with the Tongue and Pen, but even with the Sword, when Necessity requires.

I join with the Gentleman my Opponent with all my Heart, in his just Resentment against Offensive War, and cou'd wish he might have Freedom, to carry it to a higher Pitch, and prove it by Action, in [...] with the late excellent ASSOCIATION, for the [...]ppression of that awful Evil, which Words and Writings fail to express the Perverseness of!

But I think it is a Pity that our Author, for wars of distinguishing Offensive from Defensive War, in the preceding Paragraph, has unhappily condem­ned the Innocent with the Guilty! for he represents all War in the Complex as Darkness, and the Power of [...], which I humbly conceive our Author will [...] be able to prove, till he can prove two Con­tr [...] to be the same, which is impossible in the Nature of Things! And as a Consequence of the [...] Confusion of Sentiment, he is exceeding [...]table in his Opinion of all the World, a [...] excepted (which they may be compara­ti [...]ly [...]all'd) who are for absolute Passive-Obedience and N [...]-Resistance; all the rest besides them, our Au­t [...] [...]ges to be No true Christians, and not to hi [...] had the Ax laid to the Root of the Tree;’ this is lamentable! and doesn't shew such a Degree of [...] or Love as could be wish'd, tho' I trust he means well!

Give me leave to add to what has been said, that the aforesaid Place of Scripture, plainly and [...] to the Original of Offensive War, which doubtl [...]ss is the ungovernable Lusts of wicked Men; [...] Ambition and Avarice, as the Apostle ex­plains is the following Verse, these make Men dis­ [...] with their own Possessions, and dispose th [...]n unjustly to invade others, which is quite fo­reig [...] to the Point in Dispute; that is, the Defence [Page 85] of our Lives and Properties from the aforesaid un­just Violence, and differs as much from the other, as Justice from Injustice, and therefore I see not how the Opposers of Defensive War, will ever be a­ble fairly to carry their Point, until they solidly prove, that Justice, and regular Self-love, are evil and wicked; which, if I am not much mistaken, is a Herculian Labour!

The aforesaid Passage of the Apostle James, is so far from being a new Revelation, materially, that it is no other than what divers judicious Pagans dis­cover'd by the Dint of Nature's Light. E. G.

Cicero says, ‘Disorderly Passions give Birth to Hatred, Dissentions, Discord, Seditions and Wars.’ De Finib. Bon. et Mal. Lib. 1. Cap. 13.

Claudion says, ‘If Men wou'd be content with the little Nature requires, we shou'd not hear the Sound of Trumpet, nor be exposed to Sieges.’ In Ruf in Lib. 1. V. 206.

Maximus Tyrius observes, ‘All Places are now full of War and Injustice; for irregular Passions are every where let loose, and inspire all Mankind with a Desire of adding to their Possessions.’ Dissert. 13. p. 142.

Plutarch says, ‘There is no War among Men, but what arises from Vice; one from the Desire of Pleasures, another from Covetousness, and a Third from Ambition.’ Page 1049. Vol. 2. Edit. Wech.

The Saying of Tibullus, is agreeable hereto, viz. ‘That Gold is the Cause of so many Quarrels: There were no Wars (saith he) whilst People drank out of wooden Gobblets.’

‘Divitis boc vitium est auri; nec bella fuerunt faginus adstabat quum scypbus ante dapes.’

Now to conclude that those Men were against Defensive War, because of the aforesaid Speeches, [Page 86] is unreasonable, and contrary to Matter of Fact, and why is it not to be deemed so in the other Case?

In the next Place, our Author endeavours to e­nervate my Answer, to an Objection that might be formed, from these Words of the Apostle, 2 Cor. X. 4. That the Weapons of our Warfare are not car­nal, S. p. 25, 26.

Which our Author, in his Reply, V. p. 30. sig­nifies, if it be interpreted to mean no more than what I have said in the Sermon (to watch, for the sake of Brevity,, I refer the Reader, is not among Justice to the Text, but rather charging a natural Absurdity! because the Apostle in t [...] pr [...]c [...]ing Verse had told them, For tho' [...] th [...] Flesh, we do not war after the Flesh; from [...] infers, that they did not use carnal Weapons a [...] all.

I answer, the Consequence is unfair, and not bot­tomed on the Words he cites. The Apostle doesn't say that they didn't war in the Flesh, but only, that they didn't war after the Flesh; i. e. for fleshly or wicked Ends, from fleshly or wicked Principles, and in a fleshly or wicked Way, as the Word Flesh is sometimes taken in a good Sense in Scripture; and hence all Flesh is said to be Grass; so sometimes in a bad; and thus he that is said to be born of the Flesh, is Flesh. Mr. Poole in his Annotations upon the Place, favours the Sense I have given; his Words are these; ‘Tho' our Souls are in a State of Union to our Bodies, yet we war not after the Flesh, neither as fleshly Men, or in a fleshly Man­ner, nor yet for fleshly Ends; the Men of the World war for their Honour and Glory, or for Revenge and Satisfaction of their Lusts, or for the Enlargement of their Territories and Dominions; but we do not thus?,’ No! that is a wicked, offen­sive War, which our Author does well to oppose. Does the aforesaid Text speak any thing against a [Page 87] lawful War? No! only directs us how to conduct all Actions to the divine Acceptance; and therefore our Author's Charge of Absurdity wants a Founda­tion! But not perceiving this himself,

Our Author proceeds to confute a Paragraph in the Sermon, p. 25, 26. which signifies, that it is presumptuous to expect an End without the Use of Means suited to it; ‘To expect a Crop by the Dint of our Supplications, without plowing; or De­fence from unreasonable Men, without using pro­per Means for Defence, are equally unreasonable.’

Mr. S. offers several Things to overset the afore­said Paragraph, the Force of which I shall as briefly as possible examine. And,

1. He observes, V. p. 31. ‘That the Means which the Gospel allows for maintaining and keeping of Peace, are, in the first and chiefest Place, the Practice of Christian Virtues. Very true, they are excellent in Nature and Tendency, and it were to be wished that they prevailed more in the World than they do; offensive War is not like to come from that Quarter, where they have the A­scendant!

But does our Author think, that when a Man's Ways please the Lord, that he will always make his Enemies to be at peace with him? If so, then what shall we think of Christ and his Apostles? And what of these Sayings of Jesus? That his Disciples must bear his Cross, and be hated of all Men for his Name's sake, and that the World shall hate them, be­cause they are not of it.

As to any good Understanding that has subsisted between this Province and any Pagan Nations, it is to be acknowledged with all Thankfulness, as a great and undeserved Mercy of God! yet I cannot think that it is any certain Argument of the superior Piety of the first Planters (tho' I have no Inclination or [Page 88] Intention to reflect upon them, being unacquainted with their Character) and my Reason is this, be­cause the wise Man observes, That we cannot know either Love or Hatred, by all that is before us; and there is one Event to the Righteous, and to the Wick­ed.

This is a State of Trial, and not of Rewards; and hence it is that Events are promiscuous, and be­ing such, there can be no certain Conclusion drawn rationally from them, concerning the States of Men.

But supposing the superior Piety of the first Settlers of this Province, and their good Understanding and Harmony with numerous warlike Nations; yet nei­ther of these Particulars singly, nor both complexly, will prove that they were right in all their reli­gious Sentiments, because a gracious God, when the Intention is sincere, may, and does sometimes overlook and forgive Mistakes in Principle, about Things not essential to Religion, as well as Failures in Practice, naturally consequent thereupon, and vouchsafes his favourable Smiles, notwithstanding; which is indeed a great Argument of his Goodness and Condescension, and of the Riches and Glory of his Grace, but no certain Evidence of the Justness of the Sentiments, or Regularity in the Practices of Men of any Denomination in this or that Instance.

In the mean time, I am credibly informed, that the good Understanding which this Province has had, &c. has been only with the Five Nations, with which the other American Colonies have had Peace likewise; so that there is nothing extraordina­ry in the Matter.

Not to say that the aforesaid good Understanding has been doubtless maintained by the Use of out­ward Means, such as Treaties, and repeated Dona­tions: But now I am told that the State of our Af­fairs with some of the Indian Tribes is dark and du­bious, [Page 89] which should alarm the Inhabitants of this Province, to prepare for their Defence against such savage Enemies, whose Barbarities in War are too shocking to relate!

But tho' the Practice of Humility, Meekness, Benefi­cence, &c. are very good to continue Peace where it is; what shall be done to procure it where it is lost, if Defensive War be denied? Must we tamely deliver up our Lives and Properties to the Lusts of Men, without Controul? No! our Author seems to acknowledge the contrary, by saying,

2. ‘And the Trust reposed in the civil Power, for the Punishment of Evil-doers, &c. faithfully discharged, we should be so blessed and favoured with the peculiar Care of Heaven, that no violent Men should be permitted to make a Prey of us;’ This is sound Doctrine indeed; but pray how can the Trust reposed in the civil Power be faithfully dis­charged, without preparing for Defence against an Enemy, and actually wielding the Sword for that Purpose, when there is Occasion? Without these, to talk of the civil Power's discharging its Trust faith­fully, is, in my Opinion, unintelligible Jargon and Gibberish; and if these Things be allowed, our Au­thor gives up his Cause. But,

3. Our Author thinks, that to expect a Crop by the Dint of our Supplications, and to expect Pro­tection on account of our Piety and Prayers, are not similar Cases. Why so? 1. Because that the Means to procure a Crop, are necessary, innocent and use­ful to the Creation, but War is ruinous and destruc­tive to it. Answer, Very true; offensive War is so; and therefore defensive being its contrary, is excellent and necessary to preserve the Creation from Ruin!

2. Some have learnt of their Lord not to fight, V. p. 32. Answer, We have no sufficient Ground to believe a Claim to immediate Revelation in any, ex­cept [Page 90] they prove it by miraculous Works; and when this supposed Revelation enjoins any Thing in itself unreasonable, and opposes any moral Duty, which I think I have proved Self-defence to be, we have good Ground to believe it is a Mistake; for the Almigh­ty is consistent with himself in all his Precepts: And indeed such a dangerous Mistake should warn, and invite us to keep close to the Law and the Testimo­ny, to the surer Word of Prophecy, as well as to va­lue highly, and use humbly, in Subordination there­to, that Reason which God hath graciously given us, lest we fall into many more.

But our Author proceeds to enquire, V. p. 33. ‘Is it not more consistent with the Duty of a Mini­ster of the Meek, Self-denying Jesus, to recommend Piety and Prayers, as the only acceptable Means ne­cessary to obtain the Protection of Heaven?

I answer in the Negative, No! a Minister of Je­sus should tell the Truth, and deliver the whole Coun­cil of God. A Watchman, when he sees the Sword coming upon a Land, should blow the Trumpet, and warn the People, otherwise their Blood will be requi­red at his Hand!

Mr. S. proceeds next to consider what I have said upon the Prophecy of Isaiah, ii. 4. upon which he spends several Pages, V. 33, 34, 35, 36, 37. He censures my Interpretation of the Prophecy, and thinks it was designed to signify an utter Exclusion of all War of every Kind; and therefore concludes it sinful for pious People to be concerned in War at all; this I take to be the Substance of what he has said. I have in the Sermon asserted, that the Gospel inclines all that receive it in Truth, to live as much as is possible in Peace with all Men: That it is at­tended with an internal Peace, and that probably there will be a Time, before the End of the World, when the Power of Religion shall prevail more ge­nerally [Page 91] than at present, and outward Peace flourish, as the Consequent of it. See S. p. 26, 27.

The Difference then between us lies in this single Point, of the Lawfulness of using Defensive War, till that Time comes when there will be no Occasion for it; I assert this, and he denies it; let me there­fore examine the Grounds of his Negative. And,

1. ‘The Cause, saith our Author, is the judging of Christ internally in Individuals, and the Effect, that wherever this judging is experienced, there is such a Cessation from all War, A good Tree bring­eth not forth corrupt Fruit, Luke vi. 43. But War is a corrupt Fruit, because it hath Lust for its Original.’

A. Very true, Offensive War is so; and there­fore those that are pious will not bring forth such Fruit; as our Author well observes; No! but op­pose it; and this, methinks, should be in Works, as well as in Words. I am so far from a Desire of les­sening our Author's Opposition to sinful War, name­ly, Offensive, that I heartily wish it was much strong­er, and that he might get such Light, as to concur with others in Preparation to crush that Cockatrice, under God, by main Force, if milder Measures will not do, which we should be glad they would, and so prevent the Necessity of shedding human Blood; this is a Disposition truly sublime, as he justly ob­serves!

2. Our Author offers the Jewish Objection against my Opinion, V. p. 35. which he is pleased to intro­duce with an Air of Disdain; how will our mighty Pleader for War answer this Objection? Mr. S. has to Appearance used slighting Terms in several Parts of his Performance, this Sermon-writer, &c. not considering, perhaps, that he is guilty likewise of that awful Crime as well as me, since he has enter'd into an Offensive War against me; and in this Place, by [Page 92] the Figure Antiphrasis, he represents me as very weak!

Well, I own the Justice of his Charge, and there­fore any Defects that may attend this Essay, are to be ascribed thereto; and if there be any thing of a different Kind, it is to be ascribed to the Kindness of a gracious God, and the goodness of my Cause, that have helped a weak Instrument!

In the mean time, as to the Jewish Objection, so far as I can see, his Opinion does not in the least weaken it, for as much as the Prophecy respects a national Peace, which does not obtain; and therefore what becomes of the Truth of the Prophecy, if it certainly intends an external as well as internal Peace, as an immediate Consequent of the Messiah's coming?

3. Our Author finds Fault, V. p. 35. with my saying that the Gospel subdues Mens Corruptions in a Measure; he would have had me to have omitted these Words, in a Measure; but I assure him, that I don't know how to leave them out, nor does he do so, as to himself, in his Preface.

‘For Humility and Meekness, saith he, are quite opposite to War and Fighting, which pro­ceed from Pride and Covetousness.’

Ans. Very just, and therefore we ought to sup­press in others, that Monster, Offensive War; on­ly our Author, as I conceive, doesn't oppose e­nough in Degree; there seems to be his great De­fect.'

But our Author is pleased to query, Does not the Intimation, that the Gospel received in the Love of it, only in a Measure subdues Mens Corruptions, imply a Deficiency in the Power? And can it be consistent with our Lord's Doctrine, Except a Man be born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of God?

Ans. To the former Question, No! I'll make bold to take himself for an Instance. In his Pre­face [Page 93] he acknowledges that he has not yet attained, nor is already perfect: I am apt to think our Author speaks the Truth here, and that his present Perfor­mance is a Proof thereof. Now, one of these two Things follows from these two Passages of our Au­thor; either that he has not received the Gospel in the Love of it; or that his Imperfection argues no Deficiency of Power in God or his Gospel.

No! the Wisdom of God appears in suffering our present State to be attended with Defects; hereby constant Occasion is given for Self-abasement, prizing of Christ, and continual Dependence upon him, as well as longing for that Time and Place, when and where that WHICH IS PERFECT SHALL COME, and that which is in Part, shall be done away.

Bringing in Poole's Annotations, to patronize the Doctrine of Perfection, is no Argument that our Author has attain'd it himself; for it is an Attempt to make him speak contrary to his real Sentiments . [Page 94] The New-Birth no doubt implies a real and univer­sal Change of all the Powers of the Soul, whereby the general and free Byas of it is turn'd towards God, and the Dominion of Sin broken, but not in a per­fect Degree; for if so, Mr. S. by his own Ac­knowledgment, aforesaid, is unacquainted with it.

In V. p. 37, 38. our Author proposes this Que­ry, ‘When the Flame of an unjust War broke out a­gainst the Followers of Christ, did they resist? did they defend themselves? If not, how will the Sermon's Conclusion, p, 24. stand good? If the Offensive be unjust, the Defensive must of Conse­quence be just.’

I answer, That our Author changes the State of the Question, in the aforesaid Particular; there is a wide Difference between private Persons suffering Perse­cution upon a religious Account, with Meekness, which is their Duty, and a Nation's suffering tame­ly an Enemy to rob them of their Goods and Lives [Page 95] upon a civil, which is their Sin! This Fallacy being removed, the Sermon's Conclusion stands good.

But to return from this Digression, which I have been led into by Mr. Smith, I shall beg Leave to offer somewhat more upon the Prophecy aforesaid, Isa. ii. 4. Supposing that the Design thereof was outward Peace, the Doctrine of Defensive War, when Necessity requires, does not oppose it, for this only allows the Liberty of using Force, in Cases of Extremity, after all mild Measures are used, and prove ineffectual; and in the mean Time incul­cates, a peaceable loving Temper of Mind towards others; now how can that hinder Peace, which in­culcates it upon the Good, and constrains the Bad to it, by Arguments of Fear? or, in other Words, how can that hinder Peace, which promotes it?

Those that are truly pious, are so disposed to Peace and Love, that they do not give Cause for War, by their Conduct; No! it is the Wicked and Impenitent who oppress, and thereby give Cause for Defensive War.

Hence it appears, that in order to promote a ge­neral Peace, there is no Need of Mens quitting the Principle of Defensive War; no, but only of a Change of the Hearts and Lives of wicked Men; for it is from them, that that Monster of Offensive War proceeds!

If a peaceable Disposition cannot consist with the Doctrine of Defensive War, then it will follow, that those pious People before the Law, and under the Law, that held it, which they all did, so far as we know, were not of a peaceable Disposition; but the latter is false, and therefore the former. Was not Abram of a peaceable Disposition, and Moses, and Joshua, and David, and a Multitude of others, of whose Piety we have the infallible Testimony of God himself, Heb. xi. 13. King David, that gallant [Page 96] Hero, had such strong Desires after Peace, and yet cou'd not obtain it, that he takes up a Lamentation on that Occasion, and says, Wo is me that I sojourn in Meshech, that I dwell in the Tents of Kedar. My Soul hath long dwelt with him that hateth Peace. I am for Peace; but when I speak, they are for War!

Can any Now-a-days, who are for the Doctrine of passive Obedience, and absolute Non-resistance, pretend to exceed Abram in Faith, Moses in Meek­ness, Joshua in Integrity, and David in holy Zeal and Desires after Peace?

Pray are not Magistrates to be peaceable in Dis­position as well as others under the Gospel? and yet must they not use Force and shed Blood in some Ca­ses? Hence I query, Can these Things consist in the Magistrate, yea or not? I [...] yea, then I ask, why not in others? If nay, then why is such a wick­ed Office appointed, in which a Man cannot be of a peaceable Disposition, and consequently cannot be pious? For how can there be any true Piety, with­out such a Temper of Mind? If there can, let it be shewn; if not, shou'dn't every one that desires the Salvation of his Soul, upon this Hypothesis, shun the Magistracy, as he wou'd the Damnation of Hell?

It is true, if Goodness in Perfection was univer­sally obtain'd, there wou'd be no Need of Defensive War, nor of the civil Law neither; will it therefore follow, that before that Time comes, we may reasonably reject all Use of the Law, and tamely suffer unrea­sonable Men, to ruin our Credit, abuse our Bodies; and rob us of our Estates, without applying to the Magistrate for Protection, Reparation of important Wrongs, and the Punishment of heinous Delin­quents? If so, then what signifies the Magistracy? Is it not a meer Farce? And if so, how will the A­postle's [Page 97] Expression hold, That the Law is good, if it be used lawfully?

Pray do not the same Reasons, that support hu­man Laws with Penalties, support Defensive War?

Grotius speaks excellently upon the aforesaid Pro­phecy, in the following Manner; ‘Or this Place is to be understood literally, and then it is plain, the Prophecy is not yet fulfill'd; but that the Accom­plishment of it, and of the general Conversion of the Jews, is yet to be expected. But take it which Way you will, there can be nothing hence inferred against the Lawfulness of War, as long as there are those, who will not suffer others to live in Quiet, who insult such as love Peace§.’

Our Author next proceeds, V. p. 38, 39. to re­fute my Explication of Christ's Words, about not resisting Evil, Mat. v. 44. the Substance of which he represents to be this, ‘That we shou'd rather endure smaller and tolerable Injuries with Patience, than contend or go to Law for Satisfaction—That we should not indulge private Revenge, &c. That we should wish well to our Enemies, and treat them with Humanity and Kindness when in Want and Distress; and be ready to forgive the Injuries they have committed against us, when they repent over them—and that we shou'dn't exercise Severi­ty toward them, till the Case comes to Extremity, &c. I desire the Reader to see the Matter stated in my own Words, more at large, in the Sermon, from p. 23. to p. 32.

Our Author dislikes the aforesaid Explication, and offers several Objections against it, which I shall now endeavour to examine; but before I enter upon this, I would have the Reader carefully to remark, that he has in his Reply, entirely pass'd over what GRO­TIUS, and POOLE, and MYSELF have said to re­move [Page 98] the DIFFICULTY that seems to arise from the a­foresaid Text, in the forecited Pages of the Sermon, viz. 28, 29, 30, 31, 32. which is very unfair Dealing, and a Sign of the Indefensibleness of his Cause. But I proceed to his Objections, the 1st of which is this, V. p. 38. It is probable our Author tho't he shou'd make his Objection too strong, if he had given the Reasons which the Text u­ses, for enforcing Obedience to these Doctrines, That ye may be the Children of your Father in Hea­ven, for he maketh his Sun to rise on the Evil, and on the Good, and sendeth Rain on the Just, and on the Unjust—Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Fa­ther which is in Heaven is perfect.’

Ans. It is so far from what our Author has un­charitably imagined, that the Addition thereof strengthens my Argument, for our heavenly Father executes Justice upon the Impenitent, as well as vouchsafes Mercy upon the Penitent, and shou'dn't we endeavour to imitate him in all his moral Excel­lencies? Or must we, to obtain Gospel-perfection, go beyond God himself, or be unlike him? A dreadful Perfection this indeed! Pray isn't Justice one of God's moral Excellencies? And when we are com­manded to be perfect as he is, doesn't it necessarily imply, our being like him in that as well as others? Or does this Gospel-perfection contain one Excellency only, namely, Mercy? Or does it exclude any one? Then it is a poor, partial, imperfect Perfection indeed! unworthy of the honourable Name of the Gospel, and contrary to right Reason!

Object. 2. ‘A small Injury is attended with a De­gree of Injustice, and the enduring rather than re­turning it, shews in some Degree a Christian Dis­position—Now consider that Consequence with Re­spect to greater; the enduring of them, rather than returning Evil for Evil, doth certainly shew [Page 99] a much greater Degree of that Meekness, and Lowliness of Heart, which Christ taught his Dis­ciples to learn of him,’ V. p. 33.

Ans. I deny the Consequence, unless the Injury come upon us for the Cause of Religion; there is a Measure to be observed in these Things; the Place of Virtue is the Middle between two Extreams; e. g. Giving is a Virtue, when suited in Degree to our Circumstances, but otherwise it is a great Evil, as the Apostle observes, such have denied the Faith, and are worse than Infidels; it is a robbing of our Fa­milies, which we are under special Obligations first to regard and assist; and thus it is in Respect of A­buse, there is a Degree beyond which we cannot go, without encouraging the Abuser, then the Good that we shou'd return for Evil, is bodily Correction for their Insolence, or the Discipline of the Law, which we may hope will learn them better Manners for the future, and deter others: Due Correction for Offences, is in its Place very necessary, whol­some, and of excellent Service!

Some may fondly imagine, that an absolute Leni­ty or Mildness towards the Obstinate and Rebellious, and a passive Behaviour under their grievous and in­tollerable Insults, is a Christian Virtue, and Evi­dence of Love; No! (the Case of Persecution ex­cepted) if we will admit of the Judgment of God himself, it is an Argument of Hatred; He that spa­reth the Rod, hates the Child. It is a real Vice, in­stead of a Perfection, which shou'd be sincerely la­mented, and speedily abandoned! People's sincere Intention no doubt lessens the Malignity of it, but cannot wholly take it away; for whatever is bad in itself, does and will remain so, whatever we think of it notwithstanding; the Almighty's Patience has [Page 100] its Limits, and therefore so shou'd ours; else it is no Sin to be disconform'd to the Example of God, and Dictates of Reason, in Things of a moral Nature, which is absurd!

We express our Love by repelling unjust Violence with Force, for hereby our Enemies are restrain'd from doing Mischief, and bringing the Guilt of innocent Blood upon themselves; it is an Instance of Love to bind an enraged Man's Hands, from com­mitting Murder; and hence it must needs be so, to resist by Force and Arms, a bloody Tyrant that cannot be otherwise restrained!

Object. 3. V. p. 39. ‘If every particular Member of the Church is forbidden Revenge, it is because allowing of it, would manifest a Want of Patience and Fortitude to endure, and encourage Envy, Strife, Malice, &c. which produces Destruction to Particulars—’

Ans. I deny that the Reason of prohibiting pri­vate Revenge, or opposing and punishing Injuries, is because allowing of it would manifest a Want of Patience and Fortitude to endure; No! But because it is unreasonable in Society, that one shou'd be his own Judge in his own Cause, when there is any Probability of having the Matter more impartially determin'd by others.

Our Author's Reason aforesaid, if I understand it right, implies a gross Reflection upon all that are for Defensive War, as if they were a Sett of Cowards; a Reflection as unjust and unreasonable as it is un­charitable; for if it be true, there is no such Thing in Nature as active Fortitude, which opposes not only the clearest Dictates of our Reason, but also the express Testimony of God himself, who has fre­quently commended the Heroes of Israel, for their active military Bravery; hence are these high and honourable Encomiums upon some, that they were [Page 101] mighty Men of Valour, that they waxed valiant in Fight, and put to Flight the Armies of Aliens.

Object. 4. V. p. 39, 40. ‘Besides, can those who are separately forbid a Thing, be at Liberty collectively to do it—Suppose ten Men are each commanded by their Prince to abstain from a Par­ticular Dyet, because it is pernicious; it cannot surely be agreeable to that Prince, that these ten Men together, should do what separately he for­bid them; upon this View of the Case, does it look reasonable to suppose, that Christ intended to prohibit private particular Revenge, and allow of national and publick, to punish lesser Degrees of Evil, and justify greater? Did he not reprove the Scribes and Pharisees, for omitting weightier Mat­ters, whilst they tythed Mint, and Annis, and Cummin.—Ye blind Guides, which strain at a Gnat, and swallow a Camel, Mat. xxiii. 23, 24.’

Ans. Here is a bold Blow indeed at the Root of Magistracy, in as plain Words as can be well de­vis'd; all Execution of publick Justice, which the Almighty by his Apostle calls Revenge, or the Execu­tion of Wrath upon him that doth Evil, Rom. xiii. 4. is call'd by our Author, in the preceding Paragraph, pernicious, a greater Evil, yea, as much greater than private Revenge, as a Camel is to a Gnat, and all that swallow this Camel, or approve of the Execution of publick Justice, are represented as blind Guides, who like the Scribes and Pharisees of old, strain at a Gnat, and swallow a Camel.

Large Charity indeed! I confess that if the Foundation our Author goes upon, in the aforesaid Reasoning, was just and true, his Consequence wou'd follow, to the utter Overthrow of all Magis­tracy and Government; i. e. If opposing of Injuries, or in other Words, Revenge, was in it self unlawful, it cou'dn't be made lawful by any Association of In­dividuals; [Page 102] but this I deny, and on the contrary as­sert, that in a State of Nature, or when a Man is not joined to Society, he may resist or revenge Injury, but not so in Society, in ordinary Cases, be­cause he is then under Obligation to leave the Mat­ter of Wrong to be determined by the Magistrate, when he can get his Determination and Protection: This the Light and Law of Nature, and Nations, dictate; and this the Law of God, and Gospel of Christ confirm; all which conspire to establish the Magistrate's Office.

Now if publick Revenge, or the Execution of publick Justice, be in itself a great Evil, then it ne­cessarily follows, that the blessed God himself has ap­pointed a standing Office in the World, in order to carry on a Course of notorious Iniquity, namely, the Magistracy, which offers an Idea of God, that is shocking and horrible! utterly inconsistent with the essential Purity of his Nature.

And yet our Author elsewhere, p. 31. approves of the Magistrate's Office, and the Execution of it, in punishing Transgressors, in these Words; ‘And the Trust reposed in the civil Power, for the Punish­ment of Evil-doers, &c. faithfully discharged, we should be so bless'd, &c. To reconcile these Things together, I freely confess, vastly exceeds the Reach of my Understanding!

Object. 5. In Answer to what I had said in the Sermon, ‘That if the aforesaid Scripture, viz. Mat. v. 44. be taken in a literal Sense, going to Law is as much contradicted thereby, as Defensive War; but the former is absurd, and therefore the later.’ S. p. 30.

Our Author answers in the following Manner.

‘Where is the Absurdity? There are many pious Christians, that look upon the Precept to extend thus far, and therefore do not sue at Law at all: [Page 103] And if there are others who think it may be done, without contradicting the Text, provided it be done in Uprightness, and without any Hatred, Malice, or Revenge: Yet the Practice of these, doesn't in the least make void the Authority of the Precept, Resist not Evil, &c.’ V. p. 40, 41.

To which I reply, that the aforesaid Answer seems to me to be very strange and evasive; for 1. Mr. S. asserts, that there are many pious Chrstians, who look upon the Precept to extend thus far; how far pray? why so that they do not sue at Law at all; i. e. if our Author wou'd speak out, they think it wrong for them to go to Law, and so incur the Absurdity mentioned in the Sermon.

2. ‘If there are others, saith our Author, who think it may be done, without contradicting the Text, &c. Yet the Practice of these, doesn't make void the Authority of the Precept, Resist not Evil, &c.’ These Expressions are so dark and dubious, that it is hard to come at our Author's Meaning, which seems to be this, that there are some Christians by Profession, whose Sincerity he questions, that think they can safely go to Law, and if they do so, with a right Temper of Mind, it doesn't lessen the Authority of the Precept afore­said.

From this Paragraph, I would observe two Things.

1. That our Author seems to question the graci­ous State of all those that go to Law; this Sense his Words in their Connection easily bear; which is scant Charity, and not very consistent with his own Approbation of the Magistrate's Office!

2. He allows that Persons, who think it is right, may go to Law without Hatred, and if so, why not with such a Disposition to Battle for their Defence? And so his Cause is in Effect given up!

[Page 104]3. Our Author doesn't tell us, which of the two Companies aforesaid he is of himself, which it was but proper for him to do. But to proceed.

Object. 5. Is borrowed from Mr. Barclay's Apo­logy, V. p. 41. whole Words are these, ‘For it is as easy to reconcile the greatest Contradictions, as these Laws of our Lord Jesus Christ, with the wicked Practices of Wars—Whoever can recon­cile this, Resist not Evil, with resist Violence by Force, may be supposed also to have found a Way to reconcile God with the Devil, Christ with Anti-christ, Light with Darkness, and Good with E­Evil.’

I Answer, Mr. Barclay's Reasoning concludes well against Offensive War, between which and Love to Mankind, as well as Justice and Goodness, there is doubtless an unreconcilable Contradiction!

But seeing Defensive War is contrary to Offensive, in Principle and End, as well as Manner, it must needs therefore be agreeable to Love, Goodness, and our Saviour's Precept.

If Mr. Barclay intends by the aforesaid Reasoning, to signify, that both Offensive and Defensive Wars are contrary to the Precept of Christ, the Spirit and Temper of Christianity;

Then I may justly turn his own Argument against himself, and say, whoever can reconcile these Con­traries, viz. Offensive and Defensive War, (and reconciled they must be, before they can join in Op­position to Love, the Precept of Christ, and the Temper of Christianity) may be supposed also to have found out a Way to reconcile God and the Devil, Christ and Antichrist, Light and Darkness, Good and Evil.

Mr, Barclay was doubtless a Gentleman of Letters and Ingenuity, but seeing he was but a Man uninspi­red, [Page 105] he might be mistaken in some Points, as well as other Men.

If we take the Apologist in the former Sense, we have him for a Patron of Defensive War; but if in the latter, he is inconsistent with himself, and runs into the same unsurmountable Absurdities, which he reproves others for, without Foundation!

Our Author proceeds to confute a Passage in the S. p. 30, 31. where I say, ‘That killing of our E­nemies, is more consistent with Love to them, than Self-murder is with Love to ourselves;' the Reason of which I there represent to be this, viz. A greater Degree of Love we should bear to our­selves, and hence this Conclusion is drawn, that when the Safety of others and our own come in Competition; we must rather secure our own.’ Well how does our Author confute this? Why, in the following Manner, V. p. 43.

‘But are either of these Cases in the least Degree consistent?—Are they not rather as opposite as East to West? A Man can never designedly in­jure what he really loves, and it is his Duty to love Enemies.’

To which I reply, that the aforesaid Answer shifts the State of the Question, and leaves out en­tirely the Reason upon which my Argument is bot­tomed; e. g. The Question is not whether we shou'd love our Enemies, and avoid killing them, as much as can consist with our own Safety (for that I had frequently asserted in the Sermon, see p. 28, 29, 30) but whether we shou'dn't love ourselves in a greater Degree, and in Consequence hereof, when their Lives and ours come in Competition, so that one must be lost, we shou'd rather secure our own. This Foundation of my Argument he drops entirely. At this Rate of proceeding, our Author may with Ease confute any Book, that ever was composed!

[Page 106]But our Author proceeds to say, V. p. 43. as follows; ‘The Paragraph in p. 31. wherein the Sermon-writer undertakes to prove, that no more is meant by Christ's Command to love Enemies, than was enjoined under the Jewish Dispensation, is (in my Opinion) a Pi [...]ce of Sophistry, and can­not be reconciled with the Manner in which our Saviour introduceth this Doctrine, You have heard that it hath been said, &c.’

Ans. Pray Sir cool a little; Sophistry; why so? Cannot be reconcil'd, &c.—Why so? Where is the Proof?—Here we have warm Words, and nothing else!

But because great Stress in this Argument is laid by the Gentlemen of the other Side of the Question, upon the aforesaid Words of our Saviour, against resist­ing Evil, Mat. v. which I think they misunderstand, I will therefore take the Liberty to enlarge more up­on this important Part of the Argument.

And here let me enquire, if the Words of not re­sisting Evil, be taken in their strict, literal Sense, without Limitation, then why not the following Precepts about giving and borrowing? Either all shou'd be understood absolutely and literally, or none of them.

Is it not unreasonable to imagine, that we should be obliged, by the Laws of Christianity, to give to one that ask'd, that we knew either did not need it, or in all Probability would make a bad Use of it, or to give without our being able to afford it, to the Prejudice of our Families? In one of these Cases we should encourage another in Wickedness, and so be Parta­ker of their Sins; and in the other, oppose a just, natural Affection to our Families, and so, as the Apostle observes, be worse than Infidels!

If a Man by an unjust Law-suit takes away our Coat, is it reasonable to take this Passage of giving [Page 107] him our Cloak also in a literal Sense? Isn't this to encourage him in Wickedness, not only to be en­tirely passive under the Wrong, but to give him as much more of our Goods gratis? Can it be thought the Laws of an allwise God, rightly understood, wou'd thus fight against each other? Shou'dn't we interpret Scripture according to the Analogy of Faith, in such a Way as to make it Self-consistent?

If the following Precepts do oblige to give and lend, at the meer Pleasure of the Asker, or Borrow­er, without any Regard had either to their Wants; or our Abilities, then their Lusts or unreasonable Desires, are to be the Rule of our Proceeding in the aforesaid Points, and not Scripture or Reason; and if the Case be so, how then is Religion a reasonable Service? How then can we order our Affairs with Discretion? How then can we be said to have any Property in our Goods, seeing we are obliged, upon the aforesaid Hypothesis, to give to every Ask­er and Borrower, and not to turn away?

An impudent Beggar may come an hundred Times in a Day, or more, and clear us of all our Cash; an unreasonable Borrower may come as of­ten, and strip our Houses in the like Space, so that we sha'n't have a Stool to sit on, or a Bed to lie on; and may they not also, in the like Space, strip our Persons, so that we sha'n't have a Rag to cover us?

Who then has the greatest Right to our Goods, the impudent Beggar, the unreasonable Borrower, or the Owner? I Answer, the Beggar and the Bor­rower; for they can, according to this Sense of the Words, dispose of our Money and Goods according to their Lusts, and we dare not hinder them, even tho' our Reason and Conscience shou'd oppose; No! instead of that, we must help the Vagrants forward in their Wickedness; to the Ruin of our [Page 108] selves and Families, or act in direct Opposition to the favourite Principle of absolute Non-resistance, (which we are supposed to entertain) which it seems is not to be given! Is this the Gospel of Jesus? Can such an unreasonable, unaccountable Religion, come from the allwise, good God? If this be sup­pos'd, then I wou'd enquire, whether the Christian Religion be not worse in Respect of Property, than the Jewish, Mahometan, or Pagan? Was there e­ver since the Foundations of the Earth were laid, such an irrational Religion!

Well, if to avoid the aforesaid Consequences, the Precepts of Giving and Lending, must be taken in a limited, restrained Sense, viz. To signify a mer­ciful, beneficent Temper and Disposition of Mind, regulated in its Exercise by Reason, judging of our own and others Circumstances, so as not to give a­way all we have, to lazy Lurches, sturdy Beggars, unconscionable unmannerly Borrowers; then why shou'dn't we take the Precept about Resistance, in a limited Sense too? Isn't the Reason the same, the Form of Expression the same, and the absurd and perilous Consequences more than equal? Or are our Persons less worth protecting, than our Cash or Goods?

Not to add, that there is nothing annexed to this Precept of Giving, which intimates a Restriction, but it is only to be inferr'd by the Dictates of Rea­son, and the Rules of Equity; whereas the Precept respecting Resistance, has its Explication adjoin'd, which implies a Limitation, viz. that of Smiting us on the Cheek, which can intend no more than smal­ler and tolerable Injuries; is it not therefore exceed­ing unreasonable in any, to Hold the Limitation of the former, and not of the latter?

Moreover, to illustrate this Case yet further, let it be observed, that we are commanded by our Sa­viour, [Page 109] in the sixth Chapter of Matthew, To take no Thought for To-morrow, what we shall eat, or what we shall drink, nor yet for our Bodies, what we shall put on, seeing that God, who clothes the Lillies, and feeds the Sparrows, will abundantly provide for his Children, who are much better than many Sparrows. The Form of Expression here is as absolute as the other about not resisting Evil; and yet if it is taken literally, without any Limitation, it destroys at a Stroke all human Care and Diligence, all prudent Foresight; for have the Lillies and Sparrows any of these?

Now, if the aforesaid Precept be taken absolute­ly, can any Merchant carry on his Business? Can he, without any Thought of To-morrow, buy Bills, and send them to England? Send Vessels to Sea, and never think of the Time of their return­ing?

Or can a Shopkeeper carry on his Business of buy­ing Goods, without any Thought of selling them a­gain? Or sell them, without any Thought of the Time of Payment? Or if he did so, would it an­swer? Must not he shut up Shop?

If the Tradesman must not think of To-morrow, how shall he inform his Customers when they may expect their Work? Or if they want ready Money, how shall he tell them of a Time of Payment?

And how can a Farmer carry on his Husbandry according to this Notion? Can he plow rationally, and never think of the Time of sowing; or sow rationally, and never think of the Time of reaping? Then if the aforesaid Precept to avoid such Absur­dities, must be taken in a restrained, limited Sense, as signifying no anxious Thought, why not the other about Resistance much more; in as much as the Life is more than Meat, and the Body than Rai­ment?

[Page 110]Seeing that the End of Civil Government is to se­cure civil Property by Force and Compulsion, when Necessity requires; and hence the Magistrate is said to carry the Sword; if Property must be tame­ly given up to every unjust Invader, the End of Go­vernment being destroyed, there is therefore no Need of the Mean; and hence it follows, that civil Go­vernment is a needless, superfluous Institution, unless it be said, that a Mean should be used without an End, or for nothing, which is absurd!

If we are not to resist Evil at all, then how comes the Magistrate, by virtue of his Office, to punish Crimes according to Justice, and in some Cases to resist even unto Blood?

Surely Defensive War is necessarily included in the Magistrate's Office, seeing that he, instead of sub­mitting to the Violence of Criminals, resists and kills them, for the Defence and Advantage of the Pub­lick; and what does Defensive War do more? The Difference, as to the Instruments of Death, in these two Cases, is but a Circumstance that does not affect the present Argument; for both Ways Violence is used; the Death of the Person is compassed; the Substance is the same, and the End, in View, the same.

If civil Government, as described by the Apostle Paul, be agreeable to the Gospel of Christ, and yet that Force and Fighting is essential to the very Being and Preservation of it, in some Cases, it will fol­low, unavoidably, that Defensive War is, when Ne­cessity requires, lawful, and agreeable to the Gospel; the Reason of the Consequence is this, that there is an exact Parallel between the two in all Things ma­terial.

The Substance of both is the same, viz. Force, Fighting, Bloodshed, and Death.

[Page 111]The Authority enjoining both is the same, viz. of the Magistrate.

The End of both is the same, namely, to execute Justice upon those that deserve it, to preserve Life and Property, and promote the Good of the State.

The Necessity of both is the same; namely, that easier Measures, at some times, and in some Cases, will not, cannot answer the aforesaid Ends.

Now, that Force and Fighting are in some Cases essential to civil Government, appears both from Scripture and Reason; hence a Sword is assigned, a­scribed to the Magistrate, and he is said not to bear it in vain; i. e. when he acts up to his Office, he is, as the Apostle observes, a Terror to Evil-doers, a Revenger to execute Wrath, and that in some Ca­ses to Bloodshed and Death, upon him that doth E­vil, Rom. xiii. Now, if these Things do not imply Force, what does?

All acknowledge that Laws are necessary to Go­vernment; now, can these be put in Execution upon Criminals always without Force, without Fighting? Then certainly they are grown much better hu­moured of late than formerly!

What has come to pass, may again, in the like Circumstances. Does not History inform us of ma­ny Tumults and Insurrections that have been? And in such Cases, if the Sword be not drawn, and used, will not the Magistrate be trampled under Foot, his Office contemned as a silly Cypher, all Order be over­set, Justice perverted, Property unhinged, and a universal Chaos succeed, in which the Honours, the Goods, the Lives of the Innocent, are made a Prey to lawless and rapacious Violence! If a Magistrate pronounces Sentence against a Criminal, and no Force is to be used for the Execution of it, would not the Criminal, in all Probability, especially if ap­prized of this, insult him with the greatest Rudeness, [Page 112] kick him and cuff him on the Bench, for daring to offer such an Affront to a Person of his Dignity and Extraction?

Supposing, what has often happened, that a Cri­minal, legally condemned, should fly from Justice, and refuse to be taken, and, being armed, would declare that he would not be taken alive, what is to be done in this Case? Is Force and Arms to be used or not, to bring him to Punishment? If not, then civil Laws, and civil Government, are but a meer Sham, not worth a Rush, for the Protection of Pro­perty, and Execution of Justice; a poor, contempti­ble Institution, of no Authority and Influence, a fit Object for Derision and Ridicule! If yes, then Force and Arms are lawful to defend Property, and execute Justice, which is the Point in Question!

But what if the Number of Villains be greater, who join in Confederacy to affront Law and Justice, to wrong a Community, either in their Lives or Properties, or both; does not it necessarily follow, upon the same Plan of Reasoning, that a greater Force of Men in Arms be sent to bring them to Ju­stice? For can the Number reasonably exempt them from the Jurisdiction of the Law, seeing it does not lessen the Crime of each? No! but on the contrary their Confederacy encreases their Crime, as well as the Danger of the publick Safety; and therefore they must be opposed in Arms, except it be suppo­sed, that lesser Crimes should be punished, but not greater; lesser Dangers guarded against, but not greater; which, if it be not absurd, I know not what is!

Well, has a foreign Enemy any better Right to rob and murder us, than Rogues of our own Na­tion? If yea, let it be produced; if nay, then why should not we oppose them with equal Care and Force, in order to maintain the Honour of our King, [Page 113] the Safety of our Country, our Lives, our Liberties, our Goods, from Violence and Ruin!

If the forming of good Laws, and annexing pro­per Penalties to them, be agreeable to God, and good Men; why not the Execution of those Penal­ties upon Delinquents, without which they are but insignificant Scarecrows, of no Moment or Influ­ence?

If we regard good Laws, is this Regard well ex­pressed, by our tamely suffering them, without Op­position, to be trod under Foot, and consequently the Government and Privileges built upon them, o­verturned and destroyed!

Pray what is civil Government, but the Union of Individuals, for the effectual Protection of Person and Property, from Injustice and Violence? What is it but a Union of many, to do that for the publick Good, which is not in its own Nature sinful for par­ticular Persons to do, who are not united to Society, but what they frequently have not Power to do; to remedy therefore this Inconvenience, is the Design of social Union, whereby a sufficient Measure of Power is by common Consent treasured up, for the Good and Security of all the Members of that Body; which Power is to be used to the aforesaid valuable Purposes, upon proper Occasions, as the publick Managers or Officers of the Society shall di­rect.

Hence it is that Persons who are wronged, or in Danger of being so, and unable to right or guard themselves, reasonably fly to the Magistrate for Ju­stice and Protection.

This I think is a just Representation of the Na­ture and Design of civil Government; and therefore I see not how it is possible for the Wit of Man to reconcile to it the Doctrine of absolute Non-Resi­stance; for if it be unjust in itself for a private Per­son [Page 114] to resist in all Cases, it must be so also for a greater Number, as our Author has well observed, V. p. 39, 40. It must be so likewise for the Magi­strate; for a Union of Individuals can never alter the Nature of Things, or make that which is in itself unjust, to be just, as our Author fairly reasons in the aforesaid Pages, but from a false Principle.

Nor can the Almighty, to speak with Reverence of his Majesty, in a Consistency with the Purity and Perfection of his Nature, give Authority to do what is in itself wicked and unjust; and therefore this Con­sequence easily and unavoidably follows, That civil Government, and the Doctrine of absolute Non-Resi­stance, are Asustata, incompatible, irreconcilable Contradictions! And likewise,

Hence it follows, that such as are for any one of them, must, if they would consist with themselves, give up the other.

It is true, the Colourings of Art and Address, the Subtleties of indefinite Terms, Evasion and Subter­fuge, may cast a Mist of seeming Confusion over these plain Things, so as to mislead the Unwary, Partial, and Injudicious; but they can never blend them together, or really weld them into one Piece, without a Botch that may be discerned without the Help of Spectacles!

I may add, that such who think it sinful to resist in any Case, and yet approve of the Magistrate's resisting in some Cases, do virtually approve of, and thereby become accessary to what they themselves condemn as sinful; which, whether it be either inno­cent or consistent, let the Reader judge. But to proceed.

As to our Author's Reflections, V. p. 46. upon my being affected with a View of the melancholly Circumstances of this People, in case of an Enemy's coming suddenly upon them, unprepared for De­fence, [Page 115] considering that it was not without Cause, which that rational, catholick, and manly Perfor­mance, PLAIN TRUTH, makes unanswerably evi­dent, and was a generous Concern for others Safety more than my own; and likewise considering, that the holy Scriptures represent fearing always to be the Character of a wise and good Man, and that their Practice is accordingly. Thus righteous Noah being moved with Fear, prepared an Ark, to the sav­ing of his House, by which he condemned the World. Thus pious Jehoshaphat, hearing of the Design of the Ammonites and M [...]lites to invade his Kingdom, feared, and set himself to seek the Lord, and pro­claimed a Fast throughout all Judah. Thus the Man after God's own Heart trembled for fear of God's Judgments! I say, considering all these Things, it is something strange that our Author should represent me, on account of the aforesaid Concern, which he is pleased to term musing, as of a Temper of Mind and State very different fr [...]m Christianity, which I freely forgive, and look upon his groundless Satyr as an honourable Panegyrick! In so great, so good a Cause, as Concern for my Country's Safety, and an honest Essay to promote it, it is my Glory, and my Joy, to endure Invective!

As to our Author's Observations from some Pas­sages out of the Prophets, V. p. 47, 48. these Scrip­tures being, in my Opinion, [...] to Isaiah ii. 4. which I have before explained and considered, I think that Answer is sufficient here; and therefore, for the sake of Brevity, shall not add at present.

As to our Author's Citation from a Treatise, en­titled, A modest Plea, V. p. 54, 55, 56. I wou'd only observe this, that whatever our Fathers have believed, we ought with the noble Bereans, to Search the Scriptures, and see whether those Things be so or not. The Perswasion of our Fathers, how [Page 116] pious soever any of them might be, or were; or how sincere soever they were in their Designs, is no sufficient Foundation for us to receive any one of their Principles upon, unless we see with our own Eyes, the Reasonableness of them, and judge for ourselves!

As we are reasonable, accountable Creatures, 'tis fit we should do so, for another can't answer for our Conduct to God, in our Place. The best of Men, are but Men at the best; We see but in Part, and therefore in Part we may err; and this indeed is but human *.

Give me leave to offer a Word to our Author, by Way of Query, respecting divers uncharitable Sentences in his Vindication, SOME of which I have mentioned in this Reply.

Pray, Sir, Isn't judging the States of others, on Account of a suppos'd or real Mistake in Principle, respecting Things not essential to Religion and Sal­vation, contrary to the Apostle's Chain of Reason­ings, in the 14th Chapter of his Epistle to the Ro­mans; and in very Deed, a Degree of real Persecu­tion for Religion? And does this Persecution consist well with passive Principles?

And seeing that vastly the greater Part of the Christian World are for Defensive War, and many of them live sober and regular Lives, and are ac­quainted with experimental Religion, and consider­ing that they have herein the Concurrence of all the Rest of Mankind, does it look so decent and hum­ble like as cou'd be wished, to treat them with an Appearance of Slight, and to condemn their States?

It is no Doubt a great Duty to depend on divine Providence, in the regular Use of all appointed Means; but if we may, without Presumption and Impunity, depend in the Neglect of one Mean, [Page 117] may we not, by a Parity of Reason, in the Neglect of more, and consequently of all, and thus become intirely unactive, when we come to the Perfection of Virtue; a strange Sort of Perfection indeed, a Per­fection of Sloth and Indolence!

But before I conclude this Reply, I think it ne­cessary to consider those Instances which our Author has brought from Antiquity, for the Confirmation of his Opinion, and that with a sufficient Degree of Confidence, that the primitive Church was upon his Side of the Question.

Before I enter upon this Point, I would observe, that I had not meddled with the Fathers, in the Sermon he is pleased to animadvert upon, as be­lieving that the Merit of the Cause in Controversy, does not depend upon their Testimony, but upon the Suffrage of Scripture and Reason: They were fal­lible Men as well as others, and had no other Rule to direct their Sentiments and Conduct, but what we have; no Antiquity, or human Authority, can alter the Nature and Reason of Things; or justly commend to our Esteem and Acceptance, what is erroneus or absurd!

I have not mentioned these Things from any Diffidence respecting the Fathers, as tho' they were not for Defensive War, No! But to fix the Stress of the Controversy upon its proper Basis.

At the Beginning of the Reformation (if I remem­ber right) in the Disputes between the Protestants and Papists, the latter often urged, that the Fathers, together with the Scriptures, shou'd be appeal'd to as determining Judges thereof, but the former just­ly rejected the Proposal.

After some Enquiry, I cannot yet find, that our Author had any Ground of Triumph, in Respect of the Fathers: However, after having offered my Reasons, I freely leave this Point to the Judgment of [Page 118] the impartial Reader; to this End therefore let it be observed, That in order to have a just View of the Sentiments of the Fathers concerning War, it is necessary, in my Opinion, to understand and consi­der these following Particulars, viz.

1. THAT they taught unanimously, that the Church had no material Sword, or civil Power, to force or punish Men; that she cou'd only entreat, admonish, and excommunicate those that wou'dn't obey, or were refractory and obstinate. They also plainly distinguished between the State and the Church, and ascrib'd a temporal Sword to the for­mer, and a spiritual to the latter; agreeable hereto, these following Fathers speak.

Tertullian saith, ‘That it is not the Business of Religion to force Religion, or use Compulsion to that End (a).’

Lactantius saith, ‘That there is no Need of Force and Injury, because Religion cannot be forced— and that it is to be defended not by killing, but by dying (b).’

Athanasius in like Manner observes, ‘That the Truth is to be preached not with Swords or Darts, or with a military Hand, but by Perswasion and Council. It is the Property of sincere Religion, as I have said, not to force, but to perswade; thus the Lord did not compel, but granting Liberty, said to all, If any will come after me; and to the Apostles in Particular, Will ye also go away (c).’

[Page 119] Hilary, against the Arians, speaks the same Thing: ‘The God of the Universe, saith he, does not need a forced Obedience, or require a con­strain'd Confession— I cannot receive any but him that is willing (d).’

Gregory Nazianzen saith, ‘It is more equita­ble to perswade than compel, and more decent for us (e).’

Chrysostom saith, ‘Our Bodies are committed to the KING, and our Souls to the Priest; he con­strains, this intreats; he by Necessity, this by Choice; he has OUTWARD ARMS, this spiritual; he carries on WAR with the Barbarians, but I have War against Devils. And having spoken of King Uzziah being smitten with Leprosy, for intermeddling with the particular Business of the Priest's Office; on the contrary, he speaks of those of the sacred Character, in the following Manner; For, says he, it is the Business of a Priest only to reprove, and boldly and freely to admonish, not to handle Arms, not to wield the Buckler, to brandish the Lance, to bend the Bow, or to shoot the Dart; and after he has finished his Reproof, the King ceases not, but uses his Power, excites to ARMS, and manages the SPEAR and BUCKLER (f).’

[Page 120]2. THE Fathers generally maintained, that of­fending Kings could be punished with temporal Pu­nishments by GOD only.

One of the apostolical Canons speaks thus; Who­ever reproaches an Emperor or Magistrate, let him be punished; if a Clergyman, let him be deposed; if a Layman, let him be excommunicated (g). Now these apostolical Canons, tho' they were not framed by the Apostles, they are nevertheless reckoned to be very antient.

Arnobius, speaking upon the Fifty-first Psalm, Verse 4. Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, saith, ‘Every One, when he offends, comes into Judg­ment, sins against God, and violates the Laws of the World; but this Prince, acting under none but God alone, sinn'd only against him (h).’

To the same Purpose, upon the same Psalm, speaks ‘Hierom, Ambrose, Cassiodore, Euthymius, Haymo, Alexander Alensis, Lyranus, Thomas, and to the same Effect, Clemens Alexandrinus, Cyril, Aga­petus, Gregory and Isiodo [...]e.’ Whose Words I wou'd cite, were it not for fear of Prolixity.

3. IN Consequence of the aforesaid Tenet, they believed, that it was not lawful for the Church by [Page 121] Force and Arms to resist the King, or such as were in Authority, even when they abused their Pow [...]r to Oppression and Tyranny; No! But on the con­trary, that it was their Duty to endure their Cruel­ties with Patience.

‘We are reproached, says Tertullian, in his Dis­course to Scapula, and in his Apology respecting the Majesty of the Emperor, but the Christians cou'd never be found like the Albinians, Nigrians, or Cassians, who besieged the Emperor between two Triumphs, and rushed under Arms into his Palace. They were of the Romans, if I am not mistaken, that is, they were not of the Christians.’

‘But they say that the Christians only wanted Power, but not a Will (that is, to rebel against their Sovereign) yea, Tertullian witnesses, that they had such a great Force, that they could sufficiently avenge themselves in one Night, by a few Torches, if it had been lawful for them to free themselves from one Evil by commit­ing another; but God forbid, saith he, that a di­vine Sett shou'd be freed from Oppression by human Fire; we have fill'd up all your Places, your Towns, your Islands, your Forts, your Bo­rough Towns, your Council Houses, yea, your very CAMPS, your FILES OF SOLDIERS, your Palace, Senate, Market House, we only leave the Church­es to you; what War shou'd we not be fit for, and ready to undertake, albeit unequal in Force, who are so willingly slain, if it were not according to that Discipline, more lawful to be killed than to kill (i)?’

[Page 122]It was no Doubt in a Measure owing to the pri­mitive Christians patient suffering cruel Usage from the Government they liv'd under, upon a religious Account, that Christianity did then so much pre­vail.

‘Hence it is, saith Cyprian, that none of ours when he is apprehended resists; and albeit our People are more numerous, yet do they not a­venge themselves against your unjust Violence (k).’

And Lactantius speaks in the same Strain, ‘We confide, saith he, in that Majesty, who can as ea­sily avenge the Contempt of himself, as the La­bours and Injuries of his Servants, and therefore we suffer such abominable Things, and do not so much as resist in Word (l).’

Augustine speaks excellently upon this Head, a­greeable to what has been before mentioned, in the following Manner; ‘Nor then under Heathen Em­perors did the City of Christ, altho' they dwelt as Pilgrims on Earth, and had a vast Multitude of People, fight for their temporal Safety, against ungodly Persecutors; but rather to obtain e­ternal [Page 123] they did not resist, they were bound, slain, imprisoned, tortured, burnt, torn in Pieces, mur­dered, and yet multiplied. It was not their Prac­tice to fight for their Safety, except to contemn Safety for Salvation: And hence arose that famous Proverb, That the Blood of the Martyrs is the Seed of the Christians (m).’

To these I may add the Testimony of Ambrose, who frequently taught, that against a Christian Em­peror attempting to do Injustice, and invade the Rights of the Church, we shou'd use no Arms but Patience, nor any Ways resist; ‘Being compell'd, saith he, I have not known to resist, I can mourn, I can weep, I can lament against Arms, against Gothish Soldiers, Tears are my Arms, otherwise I ought not, nor cannot resist (n).’

Augustine in his Exposition of the Epistle to the Romans, speaks with great Clearness and Judgment, and very largely upon this Head, a little of which I would cite; ‘Seeing, saith he, we consist of Body and Soul, while we possess this temporal Life, we use temporal Things for the Support of it: It be­hoves us in that Part which respects this Life, to [Page 124] be subject to the civil Government; but in Re­gard of that Part by which we believe in God, and are call'd into his Kingdom, we shou'd not be subject to any Man who endeavours to overthrow that which the Almighty has been pleased to give us, in Order to eternal Life. If any one thinks, because he is a Christian, that therefore he shou'd not pay the Taxes, or offer due Honour to those that are in civil Authority, he is in a great Er­ror; but if any one thinks that he shou'd be sub­ject to them, in Matters of Faith, he is in a greater Error: That Measure is to be observ'd, which the Lord himself has prescrib'd, That we should render to Caesar, the Things that are Caesar's, and to God, the Things that are God's. If they take from us our temporal Substance, we shou'd not resist; because it is necessary, on Ac­count of this Life, to be in Subjection, not only to escape Wrath, but for Conscience sake (o).’

4. THE Fathers likewise believed, that it was not proper for Ministers to bear temporal Arms: Hence in the Apostolical Canons, ‘It is decree'd, [Page 125] that no Bishop, Presbyter, or Deacon, should fol­low the War, and retain at the same Time the Sacerdotal Function; for those Things that are Caesar's, should be given to Caesar, and those Things that are God's, should be given to God (p).’ By which it is evident, that those Christians who did not aspire to Offices in the Church, were not forbid to follow Arms; and thus the Judgment of the primitive Church, appears plainly to be in Favour of Defensive War.

Ecclesiasticks were forbid any secular Employ­ment, that requir'd continual Application, least they shou'd be thereby diverted from their proper Work; nay, they were not allow'd even to be Guardians, for the aforesaid Reason (q) This ap­appears from what was before quoted from Chry­sostom.

Ambrose speaking to the persecuting Emperor, saith, ‘We entreat, but we do not fight; we do not fear—Palaces belong to the Emperor, but the Churches to the Priest: The Power of publick or civil Offices belongs to thee, but not of sa­cred—When I heard that the Soldiers had taken Possession of the Church, I had only a greater Spell of mourning—To deliver up the Church I cannot, but to resist I ought not (r).’

5. THE primitive Christians did often­times decline engaging in War, on account of sin­ful [Page 126] Terms imposed upon them by the Emperors; such as swearing by their Genius, or by the Hea­then Gods, or sacrificing to them; thus Licinius dismissed those Soldiers from the Service, who would not sacrifice to their Gods (ſ).

This was likewise the Practice of Julian, for which Reason Victricius and others laid down their military Honours, and Offices, for the sake of Christ (t). VALENTINIAN, who was afterwards EMPEROR, had for the same Reason been deprived of a military Dignity (u).

And before this, in Armenia, under the Reign of Dioclesian, no less thon 1104 Soldiers had quitted their martial Character, as the Martyrologies wit­ness; and Menna and Hessius in Egypt.

Yea, such was the Severity of Licinius, that those who for the Cause and Name of God, which they bore in their Consciences, had resigned their military Offi­ces, could not be admitted again, unless they re­nounced the Christian Faith; it was under his Reign that Arsaceus and Auxentius resigned, two Persons of distinguished Eminence.

And this was the very Case which Tertullian speaks of in his Treatises of Idolatry, and the Soldiers Crown, as I shall afterwards prove; I might men­tion more, but I think it needless.

The aforesaid Particulars shed an easy Light upon the Writings of the Fathers respecting War, and plainly prove, that those Passages in them that seem contrary thereto, only intend their Aversion, either to the Method of propagating Religion by Force, or [Page 127] to that of resisting of any lawful Prince, or the Ma­gistrates under which we live, or the Unsuitableness of Ministers bearing Arms, or the Sinfulness of Christians engaging in War under such Circumstan­ces as necessarily involved them in Iniquities prohi­bited by the Religion they profess'd, or at least endanger'd their Innocence.

Having premis'd the aforesaid Particulars, I pro­ceed to observe, That the most ancient Writers of the Christian Church, manifest their Approbation of inflicting capital Punishments, and Defensive War, the Reasonableness and Justice of which depends up­on the former, and is indeed the same Thing sub­stantially with it, as I trust I have before prov'd.

Clement, who liv'd in the Times of the Apostles, and wrote his Epistle to the Corinthians in the Year of our Lord 68, hath these Words in it, ‘Let us consider those that bear ARMS under our PRIN­CES, with how much Order and Submission they execute their Commands; they are not all Pre­fects, Tribunes, or Centurions, yet each Man in his Rank, executeth the Orders of the Emperor, or of his Lieutenants. The Superiors cannot do without the Inferiors, nor Inferiors without the Superiors. There is a Mixture and a Use in every Thing; for Instance, let us consider our Body, the Head without the Feet is nothing, nor the Feet without the Head; the smallest of our Mem­bers are useful to the whole Body, but all conspire, and are subordinate to the Preservation of the whole (x).’

And in the Constitutions ascrib'd to the aforesaid Clement, who is call'd by some Clemens Romanus, which whether they were his or not, are acknowled­ged to be of an early Original, we have these Words, ‘Not that all killing is unlawful, but only that of [Page 128] the Innocent; provided that this Right of putting to Death, be reserved to the Magistrate alone(y).’

Farther, Clemens Alexandrinus, who liv'd in the second Century, says, ‘That a Christian, if he be call'd to the Government, shou'd be as Moses, a living Law to the Subjects, reward the Good, and punish the Bad. And in another Place, de­scribing the Habit of a Christian, It wou'd be­come him to go Bare-foot, says he, unless he shou'd happen to be a SOLDIER (z).’

Irenius (in the Second Century) proving that Kings are the Ministers of God, whom all are bound to obey, speaks thus, ‘Because Man by wandering from the Almighty, grew so enraged, that he reckon'd his Blood-relations his Enemies— Therefore the Almighty laid upon him human Terror, that so being subject to the Power of Men, and bound by their Laws, they might at­tain to some Measure of Righteousness, and be in­duc'd thro' Fear of the Sword, publickly held forth, to moderate their Conduct to each other; and agreeable hereto, they are Ministers of God, who demand Tribute of us, Powers ordain'd by him, in Order to compass this Design (a).’

But that which is of greater Weight in this Argu­ment, than the private Opinion of particular Per­sons, is the Authority of the Church, which appears to be evidently in Favour of Defensive War, from [Page 129] the Apostolical Canon before mentioned, and the following Particulars, namely,

1. Never any were deny'd Baptism, or excommunicated by the Church, because they were Soldiers; which surely they wou'd have done, if they had reckon'd the military Profession sinful, and absolutely forbidden by the Doctrines of Christ, with our Au­thor.

Tertullian in his Treatise concerning Idolatry, says, ‘Such Persons are not received into the Church, as exercise Professions not allowed of by the Law of God (b).’

Augustine asserts, ‘That the primitive Christians admitted neither Prostitutes, Stage-players, nor Persons of any other infamous Professions, to the Sacraments of the Church, till they had renounced such criminal Engagements (c).’

Cyprian mentions an Example of this Kind of Discipline upon a Comedian (d).

And there are others of Gladiators, great Promoters of Lewdness, and of such as traded in Cattle for Sa­crifices, in the Writings of Tertullian (e). And one of a Charioteer in the publick Games, in Austin.

On the contrary, we have in the aforesaid Consti­tutions of Clemens, this notable Declaration of the Churches Judgment, respecting the Lawfulness of the military Office; ‘Let a Soldier that desires to be baptiz'd, be exhorted to abstain from Wrongs and Oppressions, and to be content with his Pay: If he complies with these, let him be admitted (f).’

Nor is it any Wonder that the primitive Church admitted Soldiers to her Communion, without Cen­sure, seeing that the inspired Apostle Peter did so [Page 130] before them, in the Cause of Cornelius the Centuri­on, that worthy pious Soldier, whom he baptiz'd without Rebuke; and probably together with him, that DEVOUT SOLDIER, of them that waited on him continually: Hence I would propose the following Queries, viz.

Query 1. Why does the Spirit of God, speaking by the Scriptures, put such Honour upon Soldiers, even under the New Testament, if the Profession be sinful?

Query 2. Why were such admitted to Baptism, or added to the Church by his infallible Direction, without any Profession of Sorrow, for being con­cerned in the military Business in Time past, with­out any Promise of discontinuing in it for the fu­ture? (See Acts x. 2, 7, 41) How can these Things be reconcil'd to the Purity of the blessed Spirit, and to the Government he has instituted in the Church, upon the Supposition of the Sinfulness of Defensive War? Didn't gross Offenders, that were baptized by John, confess their Sins first, be­fore they were admitted to be Members of the Christian Church by Baptism? See Mat. iii.6.

If the military Business be sinful under the Gospel, then Cornelius (the Prefect, or Captain over a hun­dred Soldiers, as the Word Ecatontarches signifies) and his Soldier Attendant, liv'd in a Course of Sin, which the Scriptures represent to be a Sign of a dam­nable State, He that commits Sin, is of the Devil: Then,

Query 3. How is it that both are honoured by an inspired Person, with the Character of devout and pious, or right Worshippers of God, which the Word (Eusebes a eu bene et sebo colo) signifies? How can these Things consist together?

2. Soldiers that suffered Torments and Death for the Cause of Christ, received the same Honours from [Page 131] the Church with other Martyrs, as it afterwards mentioned, which surely they never would have gi­ven, if they had not looked upon Defensive War to be lawful.

The following Words of eloquent and pious Cy­prian are very memorable and full to this Purpose; Laurentinus and Ignatius, saith he, did heretofore bear ARMS in secular CAMPS, but in the mean time were true, spiritual Soldiers of God, while by the Concurrence of Christ they vanquished Satan, they merited Palms of the LORD, and Crowns, by their illustrious Passion; we always make ho­nourable Mention of them on every anniversary Day, in which we celebrate the Memory of the Martyrs Passions (g).’

Rigaltius upon these Words saith, ‘That it was the Custom of the Greeks to celebrate Panegyricks to the Honour of brave Men, who have endured the Cruelties of a Tyrant Monarch, or have other­wise fought nobly for their Country, that by their Example they might incite their own to worthy and gallant Actions. The Christians, saith he, on sta­ted Days every Year praise God, having mentioned the Names of those who have, for [Page 132] the Faith of Christ couragiously endured Martyr­dom.’

3. The primitive Church expresly declares her Judgment in favour of Defensive War, as appears thus: Tho' the Emperor Constantine, after he pro­fessed Christianity, and put the Name of Christ on his Standard, had a great many Christians in his Ar­my, and was engaged in War, yet we find not one of all that Multitude of Bishops, that lived in his Empire, who either dissuaded him from going to War, or dissuaded the Christians from serving him in it, altho' divers of them were strict enough in [...]he Discipline of the Church, and ready to speak their Minds.

Among all that Multitude of Canons respecting Discipline, which were made by the various Coun­cils of the Eastern and Western Churches, at their rumerous Sessions, during the first five Centuries af­ter Christ, tho' many of them were severe respect­ing divers Abuses; yet, after some Search and En­quiry, I cannot find one Canon in all the Catalogue against Defensive War, as unlawful in itself; or any C [...]e, whereby Laymen are authoritatively debarred of Church Fellowship, or of Baptism, and the Lord's Supper, for their engaging in it: And can any rea­sonably imagine, that this would have been wholly passed over, if the Judgment of the Church had been against it! Nor do I know of any Canon made by any Council or Synod of Ministers against Lay-persons (who had not done Penance) engaging in a Defensive War, when no sinful and ensnaring Terms were proposed, for 1500 Years after Christ; so that it is surprizing to me, that our Author should so strongly imagine the primitive Church to be on his Side of the Question!

‘The Bishops, in the Reign of Constantine, when he consulted him about his warlike Design against [Page 133] the Persians, were so far from discouraging him in this Enterprize, that they willingly promised to follow him to the Wars, and fight against his Ene­mies, by the spiritual Warfare of Prayers to God for him. In this Expedition, saith Eusebius, he seemed to follow them, and commanded a Taber­nacle or Tent to be built in Fashion of a Church, wherein he and his Bishops might pray unto God, the Giver of Victories.’ Eusebius on the Life of Constantine, p. 69.

This Instance clearly proves, that the primitive Christians were for Defensive War; this was the first Time of their being clothed with civil Authority as a State (and surely they could not act as a State be­fore they were one) Now they had a Prince of their own Religion at their Head; now they could fight in Defence of their Country, without complying with idolatrous Terms; and therefore this was the proper Time for them to declare their Opinion, and to act according to it, and this we see they did.

Pray, where is there any Instance of a Christian's refusing to serve in the War in Constantine's Reign? It was so far from this, ‘That an Act was made to restore Professors of Religion to their military Offi­ces, who had been deprived of them for their Con­stancy and Courage in the Cause of Religion by persecuting Princes; and consequently we find a Number of Christians in his Army. He gave Li­berty and Vacancy, saith Eusebius, to those who by a divine Instinct had embraced the Faith, that they might freely frequent the Church of God, and offer up their Prayers to him; for he said, they ought not to use their Spears only, or put their Confidence in Weapons and Strength of Body; but to acknowledge God the Giver of Victory, to whom with Hearts and Hands lifted up to Heaven, we ought to render due Praise and Prayer, and be­seech [Page 134] him to protect and defend us.’ Eusebius on the Life of Constantine, p. 27. and 59. agreeable to which was his own Practice. Will our Author con­descend to learn the Lawfulness of Defensive War in Gospel Times, and the wide Difference between the Use of martial Weapons, and a Dependance on them, of one of the greatest and best of Men that ever the Sun saw? I mean the EMPEROR CONSTAN­TINE the Great. Behold that pious, potent Prince, earnestly praying to his God, with his Bishops, and o­ther devout Souls, before the Battle, for Success! Be­hold him intirely depending upon God for that Pur­pose! And when the Victory was obtained, see with what a grateful Mind he ascribes all the Glory of it it to Jehovah! Constantine embraced Christianity in the Year 311.

Augustine expresses distinctly and clearly the Opi­nion and Practice of the primitive Church respecting War in the following notable Words: Julian, saith he, was an Infidel Emperor, a wicked Apo­state and Idolater, and yet Christian Soldiers served the Infidel Emperor; when the Cause of Christ came upon the Carpet, they acknowledged none but him, who was in Heaven; when he would have them worship Idols, or burn Incense, they preferred God to him; but when he bid them put the Battle in Array, and march against any parti­cular Nation, immediately they obeyed; they distin­guished the eternal from a temporal Lord; never­theless, for the sake of the eternal Lord, they were subject to a temporal One (h).’

[Page 135] Augustine shewing that War is not absolutely condemned by the Gospel, reasons thus, If all Wars were condemned by the Christian Doctrine, the Soldiers in the Gospel, when they ask'd Ad­vice, for the Security of their Salvation, wou'd rather have been commanded to lay down their Arms, and entirely renounce their Profession; whereas 'tis only said, Do Violence to no Man, neither accuse any falsely, and be content with your Pay. Now when they are commanded to be con­tent with their Pay, they are not forbid to conti­nue in the military Profession.' Epist. 5. and 105. And elsewhere he says, 'That if the Soldiers who guarded St. Paul, had fallen upon his factious E­nemies, the Apostle wou'dn't have tho't himself guilty of their Blood; Saint Paul, saith he, took Care to provide himself with a strong Guard for his Defence, Epist. 50. to Boniface; 154. to Publicola, and 164.’

Chrysostom observes, ‘That to this End Tribu­nals were erected, Laws made, Punishments ap­pointed, and various Kinds of Penalties enjoined.’ Serm. ad Patrem Fidel.

Moreover the Council of Africa, makes Use of the aforesaid Passage in Order to justify their Reso­lution, of imploring the Emperor's Assistance a­gainst the Factious; for thus they speak, ‘Against whose Fury we may call for such Defence, as is not unusual, or disallow'd by the Scripture; since the Apostle Paul, as we read in the Book of Acts, secur'd himself against a Conspiracy of factious Men, by a military Force.’

Now can clearer Evidence of the Churches Judg­ment [Page 136] in the Affair of War be reasonably desired, than the aforesaid Particulars considered complexly?

But before I offer a Train of SOLDIER MARTYRS to the Reader's View, I would beg Leave to men­tion a few Particulars more, to confirm and illus­trate what has been already observed.

Meliton, Bishop of Sardis, presented to Marcus Aurelius, Anno Dom. 170, an Apology for the Christians, wherein speaking of the Plunders com­mited against them, he saith, ‘If it be by your Order, I shall not say but it is well done; a just Prince never ordains any Thing that is unjust, and we are willingly recompenced with such a Death (i).’

Arnobius, in his eloquent Apology (wrote in the Third Century) has the following beautiful Para­graph; ‘The Christian Religion, saith he, is con­tented with its own Strengh, and stands firm and unshaken on the Foundations of Truth it self; nor is it spoil'd of its Energy, tho' it has no Avenger, no Protector; yea, tho' every Tongue shou'd re­proach and oppose it, and conspire its utter Over­throw (k).’

Cyprian, who flourish'd about the Middle of the Third Century, speaks sweetly, in the following Strains; ‘If it be glorious for secular Soldiers, af­ter having vanquish'd their Enemies, to return in Triumph to their native Country; how much more eligible and greater is the Glory, after having over­come our spiritual Enemy Satan, to return in [Page 137] Triumph to Paradise, bearing the Trophies of Victory (l).’

Arnobius, in another Part of his Apology, addres­ses the Pagans in this Manner, ‘Why do ye perse­cute Christ, saith he, with such distressing Wars, that even at the very mentioning of his Name, your Bosoms boil with Rage and Resentment? Did ever he claim a Kingly Authority, and fill the World with his hostile Legions, destroying some that were from Time immemorial peaceable, and forcing others into his Obedience (m)?’ Here it may be observed, that altho' Arnobius justly oppo­ses an Offensive War, yet he acknowledges the kingly Authority to maintain a Defensive.

Minutius Felix (who according to Rigaltius, was Cotemporary with Tertullian) and liv'd in the Se­cond Century, says, ‘What SOLDIER wou'd not with greater Intrepidity under the Eye of an Empe­ror encounter Danger? None before Trial receive the Reward; and the Emperor gives not what he has not; he cannot prorogue Life, but he can make War lawful and honourable; but the Soldier of God, is neither deserted in Grief, nor finally destroyed by Death (n).’

[Page 138] Nazarius, in his Panegyrick upon Constantine, saith, ‘So great a Share in War hath a good Con­science, that Victory is rather owing to the Integri­ty, than the Courage of the Soldiers (o)

Augustine, who flourish'd in the Fourth Century, concerning the Causes of War, speaketh as follows, ‘The usual Distinction of just Wars, is, that they are undertaken for revenging Injuries, when any Nation or State upon which War is made, either has neglected the Punishment of its own Delinquents, or the Restitution of what was taken away unjust­ly (p).’ And elsewhere he saith, ‘We seek not Peace, to make War; but we make War, in or­der to establish Peace (q).’

B [...]sil speaks thus of the ancient Christians, ‘Our Ancestors ever accounted Slaughters committed in War as Murders, excusing them who fought for Virtue and Piety (r)

Ambrose saith, ‘That Valour which either defends our Country by Arms from Barbarians, or pro­tects the weak at Home, or our Companions from Robbers, is compleat Justice (ſ).’

How can an Emperor try the Courage of his Soldiers, except he has an Enemy? S [...] Lactanti­us (t).

[Page 139] ‘Then we pray, saith Cyril of Jerusalem, for Kings, for their Armies, and their Allies (u).’

Gregory Nazianzen saith, ‘That we must render to Caesar, the Tribute that belongs to him; that War, which occasion'd Tribute, was a Conse­quence of the first Sin (x).’

Gregory Nyssen has made no less than three set Discourses, or Panegyricks in Praise of the 40 Soldi­er-Martyrs (y) of whom mention is made after­wards in this Reply.

But to proceed.

That the Christians in general bore Arms under the Roman Emperors farther appears from the fol­lowing Instances of SOLDIER-MARTYRS.

‘Among the Martyrs at Vienna and Lyons, in France, was Maturus, lately baptized, yet a nota­ble Warrior (z) under the Emperor Antoninus Verus.

Histories do record, that when Marcus Aurelius, ‘the Brother of Antoninus, warred against the Ger­mans and Sarmatians, his Host was ready to perish with Thirst, so that he wist not what to do; and that the Soldiers of the Legion called Melitina, mov'd with Faithfulness towards their Prince, bow'd down upon their bare Knees (as our accus­tom'd Manner of praying is) in the Midst of the Army, turning them to the Enemies, and made Supplication unto God. When as this Sight seem'd strange unto the Enemy, there was shew'd a far more strange Spectacle, to wit, Lightning, which put the Enemy to Flight and Overthrow; and withal a Shower of Rain to refresh the Army, which was well nigh perishing with Thirst, poured out their Prayers before the high Throne of the [Page 140] Majesty of God. This History is reported by such as favour'd not the Christian Faith, yet were careful to set forth the Things which concerned the foresaid Persons. It is also written by our Men, whereof Apolinarius is a Witness of Credit, who reporteth that this Legion (by whose Prayers this Miracle came to pass) was from that Time call'd by the Emperor the Lightning Legion. Ter­tullian, also a Man worthy of Credit, dedicating an Apology in the Latin Tongue, unto the Roman Senate, in the Defence of our Faith, hath con­firm'd this History with a more manifest Proof; for he writeth that the most prudent Epistles of of Marcus are yet extant, wherein he himself tes­tifieth, that warring with the Germans, his Army well nigh perished thro' the Scarcity of Water, yet was saved thro' the Prayers of the Christi­ans (a).’

‘The Substance of this memorable and miracu­lous Deliverance, says Echard, is sufficiently con­firmed, both by the Christian and Pagan Writers; who unanimously ascribe it to the Power of God. Some of those Writers liv'd almost in the same Age, all of them before Learning was sunk, Di­on Cassius has given us a particular Account of it, and ascribes it to some divine Power assisting the Emperor.—Other Heathen Writers, as Capitoli­nus, Themistius, and Claudian, ascribe it to the Prevalency of the Emperors own Prayers.—The Care that the Pagans took to carry off the Ho­nour of this miraculous Event, serves, at least, to confirm the Truth of the Fact. And without Fear of being tho't too credulous, or endeavour­ing to support the Christian Religion by Fable and Falshood, Artifices it never needed, we shall affirm, that there is no Reason to reject the Tes­timony [Page 141] of the Writers of those Times, who posi­tively assure us, that the Captain of the Guards having inform'd the Emperor that GOD deny'd nothing to the Christians, of whom many were in the Legion of Meletina, a City of Capadocia, and that he ought to try if their Prayers wou'd pro­cure that Deliverance which he could not otherwise expect: The Emperor ordered they shou'd be called together, and that they all did at the same Time in­voke the only true God, whom the Winds and Storms obey, and who had often deliver'd his Servants by such extraordinary Interposition. An­toninus being too just to stifle the Miracle, imme­diately wrote to the Senate of Rome in Favour of the Christians, and ordered their Accusers to be punished with Death; a convincing Proof that he tho't this Assistance owing to their Prayers. Tertullian appeals to these Letters within twenty-six Years after, in a solemn Apology in Behalf of Christianity, which he durst not have done, had not the Thing been past Dispute.—The Additions made to this Story in after Ages, can do no real Prejudice to the History itself. For the Reader's farther Satisfaction, we refer him to the ingenuous Mr. Wotton's Notes at the End of his Life of the Emperor Marcus Aurelius. See Echard's Ec­clesiast. Hist. p. 338-9. To the same Effect speaks Doctor Cave in his primitive Christianity, p. 58. The aforesaid memorable Event happened in the Year of our Lord 174, says Echard.

Dionysius, Bishop of Alexandria, relates the Con­stancy of such as were martyr'd at Alexandria, un­der Decius, among whom a Soldier was beheaded for being a Christian; of him Eusebius speaks thus; ‘When as they were bro't forth, a certain Soldier rebuk'd such as revil'd them, wherefore they ex­claim'd against him, so that this valiant Warrior [Page 142] of the Lord [...] bro't forth to [...], who after that he had stoutly behav'd himself, in that great Skirmish for the Christian Faith, was behead­ed (b).’

Dionysius, Bishop of Alexandria, in his Epistle to Domitius and Didymus (under the Emperors Valeri­anus and Galenus) making mention of many who were persecuted, says, ‘Take this for certain, there were Men, Women, young Men, old Man, Virgins, old Women, SOLDIERS, and simple Men of all Sorts and Sects of People; whereof some after Stripes and Fire were crowned Victors, some after Sword, some others in small Time sufficient­ly try'd, seemed acceptable Sacrifices to the Lord (c).’

Eusebius likewise informs us, ‘That about the Year of our Lord 262, at Caesarea in Palestina, one Marinus, a famous Soldier for Feats of Arms, of noble Lineage and great Substance, was be­headed for the Testimony of Christ, because he was a Christian, and sacrific'd not unto the Empe­rors.

Farther, Eusebius elsewhere observes, ‘That after a great Abuse of Liberty, and much sinful Con­tention, the heavy Hand of God's Judgment, in the Persecution rais'd by Dioclesian, came upon them, which, saith he, took his first Original from the Brethren under Banner in Camp, And in another Chapter of his Book, speaking of this In­stance, he saith, ‘At the first the Chief Governor starting up, as it were out of a profound Drunken­ness, levell'd at the Church privily and obscurely (since the Time which passed after the Reign of Decius and Valerianus) and waged Battle with us, not suddenly, but first assail'd only the CHRISTI­ANS [Page 143] which were in CAMP, by this Means he tho't easily to ensnare the rest, if that first he conquered these. And here you might see many of the SOLDIERS desirous to lead a private and solitary Life, fearing they shou'd faint in the Service of Almighty God; for when the Captain first went about to persecute his Host, and to try and sift as many as were bro't to him thro'out every Ward, and to give them in Choice, either to obey and enjoy their Dignity, or to resist, and on the con­trary be deprived: Many of the SOLDIERS which were of the KINGDOM of CHRIST, without any Delay or Doubt, preferred the Faith of CHRIST before the Favour and Felicity they seem'd to en­joy. And one or two of them, very heartily, not only contemned their Dignities, but also endured bitter Death, for their Constancy in the Service of God (d), Anno Dom. 301.’

Another Instance mentioned by Eusebius, is that great Officer PHILOROMUS, Governor of Alexandria, a Gentleman of no small Account, ‘Put in Trust with weighty Matters of the Empire, being guard­ed after the Roman Dignity and Honour, with a Troop of Soldiers to his Train, a Man of Riches, Honour, Eloquence, and Philosophy, yet pre­ferred before all these, the Piety and Faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, with a constant and philosophi­cal Mind, yea rather divine, enduring all the Threats and Contumelies of the Judge, was be­headed (e).’

Another memorable Instance mention'd by Euse­bius, is, ‘A City in Phrygia wholly inhabited of Christians, which when the Soldiers had besieged and compassed in (both Men, Women and Chil­dren, which called upon the Name of the Lord) [Page 144] they set all on Fire, and burnt them to Ashes; for with one Consent all the Inhabitants thereof, the LIEUTENANT, the CAPTAIN, the whole SE­NATE, and the People, every one protested them­selves to be Christians, and could by no Edicts be brought to adore Idols, or carved Images (f).’

‘Another famous Officer in the State, renowned for Roman Dignity, whose Name was AUDACTUS, by Lineage come of a noble House in Italy, and for his Virtue in great Credit with the Emperor, so that he governed with great Wisdom and Up­rightness the Commonwealth, and weightiest Mat­ters of the Empire; but above all he was famous for Religion and Faith in Christ, endured Tor­ment, and was crowned with Martyrdom (g).’

Eusebius gives us another Instance of a Confessor and a Soldier, by Name Seleuchus, who was be­headed for the Cause of Christ, whose Character he represents in the following Manner: ‘He excelled all the rest of the Soldiers in youthly Favour, in Strength, and goodly Stature; he was famous at the Beginning of the Persecution, for his patient suffering of Stripes in the Defence of the Faith, and being deprived of his warlike Dignity, which he enjoyed, became a zealous Follower of the Worshippers, or religious Men; he succoured and provided for with fatherly Care and Oversight, the Fatherless, the Succourless, the Widows, and such Men as were visited with great Misery and Afflic­tion; wherefore God being rather delighted with such Sacrifices of Mercy, and Works of Charity, than with smoaky Incense, and bloody Oblations, called him, of his Goodness, unto this glorious and renowned Garland of Martyrdom (h).’

[Page 145] ‘We may add, saith Grotius, that some Soldiers that had suffered Torments and Death for the sake of Christ, received from the Church the same Ho­nour with other Martyrs; among whom are re­corded three of Paul's Companions: Cerealis, who suffered Martyrdom under Decius; Marinus, under Valerian; FIFTY under Aurelian, Victor, Maurus, and VALENTINUS a LIEUTENANT-GE­NERAL, under Maximian: About the same Time Marcellus the Centurion, and Severian under Licinius. Hence it is pla [...] what the common Opinion of the primitive Christians was concerning War, even be­fore the Emperors were Christians (i).’

Learned Barbeirack adds to the Instances before­mentioned, ‘That of a Soldier baptized by Cornelius, related by Ado▪ in his Martyrology (k).’

Monsieur Fleury, in his Ecclesiastical History of the three first Centuries, gives an Account of four Soldiers, ‘Namely, Ammon, Zeno, Ptolomeus, and Ingenuous, who came of a sudden before the Tri­bunal, a Christian being at that Time under the Torture, and almost ready to abjure, to whom they made Signs by their Looks, and with their Bodies, gnashing their Teeth, and stretching out their Hands; all the People cast their Eyes upon them; but before any Body laid hold of them, they ran to the Scaffold, saying that they were Christians. The Prefect and his C [...]uncil were sur­priz'd at it, and the Martyrs coming from the Tribunal, went joyfully to the Place of executi­on.’

Tertullian, in his Apology, speaketh in this Man­ner to the Senate, ‘You need but consult the Let­ters of Marcus Aurelius, that wise Emperor; in which he bears Testimony to the Rain which the [Page 146] Christian Soldiers obtain'd by their Prayers, for as­swaging the Thirst of his Army in Germany.

Afterwards speaking of the Emperor, he saith, ‘We shall not entreat for him, those who are not Gods; dead Persons that have no Power; but we shall address ourselves for his Safety, to the liv­ing God, lifting up our Eyes to Heaven, and stretch­ing out our Hands, with our Heads bare, we pray for all the Emperors; and we beg that they may live long, and reign peaceably, that they may find Safety in their Houses, VALOUR in their TROOPS, and Fidelity in the Senate.—’

‘We swear not, saith he, by the Genius of the Emperor, but by his Safety, more venerable than all the Genii; know ye not that the Gen [...]i are so many Demons(l)?’

‘They reproach us in another Respect; they say we are useless in the Affairs of Life: How can they affirm this, since we live amongst you, using the same Food, the same Clothes, and the same Goods? We go to your publick Places, to your Markets, and to your Fairs, and to your Baths, and to your Inns; we sail with you, we traffick, and we BEAR ARMS (m).’

Maximian associated in the Empire his Son Maximus, and it is probable, that upon his Accession, he gave Largesses to the Soldi­ers; and to this we may attribute the Book which [Page 147] Tertullian wrote after his Fall, concerning a Soldi­er's Crown.—’

‘The Soldiers came as was usual, crown'd with Laurel, to receive their Share of the Donation; and there was one amongst them who appeared with his Head bare, holding his Crown in his Hand; the rest who were far distant, pointed at him and scoffed, and those who were near, raged with Indignation; the Tribune hearing of the Noise, ask'd him why he wasn't like the rest? It isn't law­ful for me, said he, because I am a Christian: Then they consulted about the Matter, and he was sent back to the Prefects of the Camp; there he was degraded, and quiting his Coat, his Buskins, and his Sword, he was put into Prison. Several bla­med him, as having expos'd himself rashly, and endanger'd the Peace which the Church had long enjoy'd; maintaining besides, that this Crown was an Ornament that was indifferent. Tertullian on the contrary asserts, that it was a Mark of Idola­try, and accordingly undertakes to defend the Sol­dier (n).’

But in the mean Time acknowledges, that that Soldier had many Christian Fellow-Soldiers in the Army (Cap. 5).

The aforesaid Particulars, duly considered, do, in my Opinion, plainly prove, that Tertullian acknow­ledged the Lawfulness of War, when no sinful Terms are impos'd. But to proced.

‘The Emperor Maximian went into Gaul in the Beginning of his Reign, against Elian and Aman­dus, whom he defeated. He brought out of the East a L [...]egion call'd the Theban Legion, consisting entirely of Christians; and when he would have made use of them to persecute the Christians, as [Page 148] the other Legions did, they refus'd to obey him. The Emperor to refresh himself after the Fatigue of his March, staid at a Place in the Alps near Oc­todura, now Martinach, in Valeis; and the The­ban Legion was then near Ag [...]una, at the Foot of the Alps, which is at present called Great St. Ber­nard. Maximian enraged at their Disobedience, commanded the Legion to be decimated, and re­peated his Orders to oblige the Rest to persecute the Christians. Decimation is a military Punish­ment appointed to be in [...]d on a great Body of Cr [...]s. The Theban Soldiers hearing of the second Order that was given, began to cry out o­ver all the Camp, that they wou'd suffer all Ex­ [...], [...]th [...]r than do any Thing contrary to the Christian Religion. Maximian ordered that they should [...] [...]mated a second Time, and that the Rem [...]inder of th [...] shou'd obey his Orders. Then every Tenth Man was put to Death, according as the Lot [...]ll, and the rest exhorted one another to persevere.’

‘They were principally encourag'd by three of their General Officers, M [...]uritius, Exuperus, and C [...]ndidus, who propos'd to them the Example of their Comrades, whom Martyrdom had already conducted to Heaven; by their Advice they sent a Remonstrance to the Emperor, the Substance of which was this, My Lord, we are your Soldiers, but the Servants of the true God, as we freely con­fess: We owe you Service in War, and him Inno­cence: We receive Pay from you, from him Life: We cannot obey you by renouncing God our Cre­ator, our Master, and yours likewise, even when you reject him. If we are commanded nothing that gives us just Offence, we readily obey, as we have done to this present Time; otherwise we will obey him rather than you. We will rea­dily [Page 149] oppose all your Enemies, whosoever they are; but think not that we can be allowed to dip our Hands in the Blood of innocent Persons. We have taken our Oath to God, before we took one to you, and you can place no Confidence in our second Oath, should we violate the first. You command us to search out for Christians, in order to punish them; you need not enquire after others, behold we are here. We confess GOD the Father, Author of all Things, and his Son Jesus Christ, we have seen our Companions slain in our Sight, without lamenting for them; we rejoice at the Ho­nour they have had to suffer for their God; neither this Extremity, nor Despair, hath urged us to re­volt; we have Arms in our Hands, but resist not; because we had rather die blameless, than live cul­pable!’

Maximian, having no Hopes of overcoming so great Constancy, order'd them all to be put to Death, and commanded his Troops to surround them, and cut them to Pieces! Th [...]y made no Resistance, but dropt their Arms, and presented their Necks to their Executioners! The Ground was covered with their dead Bodies, and Streams of Blood [...]lowed on it! Their Number is suppos [...]d to be about Six thousand, of which Number a Le­gion did generally consist.’

‘A veteran Soldier, named Victor, who was not of that Legion, but out of the Service, met him as he was passing along, among those Soldiers who had put the Martyrs to Death, and rejoicing over their Spoils, they invited him to eat with them, and related with Pleasure what had passed. As he retired, detesting the Feast, and those that made it, they enquired of him, if he was not also a Christi­an? He answered that he was, and should always [Page 150] continue one; upon which they instantly fell upon him, and slew him (o), An. Dom. 285 (p).’

The next Instance that I would mention is St. Victor of Marseilles; it is certain, saith Fleury, ‘That he suffered Martyrdom by Order of the pre­sent Emperor Maximian, and after the Theban Le­gion; he was a Christian Soldier, and so zealous, that he went in the Night-time to visit the Faith­ful, and encourage them to Martyrdom; being seized, he was immediately brought before the Prefects, who exhorted him not to resign his Ex­pectations, and the Favour of his Prince, for a dead Man; such they took Jesus Christ to be. He answered with Abundance of Freedom, which drew upon him the Looks and Insults of all the Infidels about him; but because he was a Person of Distinction, the Prefects referred him to the Emperor himself; and he shewing no less Constan­cy at his Tribunal; the Emperor being highly in­censed, ordered him to be dragged through the Ci­ty; [Page 151] whereupon they tied him Hand and Foot, and drag'd him in this Manner, expos'd to the Blows and Insults of the Populace; which every one tho't they had been criminal if they had not offered. He was then bro't back mangled and bloo­dy to the Tribunal of the Prefects; and believing him sufficiently humbled by this Usage, they still pressed him by the Reasons which the Pagans com­monly made Use of. The Martyr on the other Hand, encourag'd by this Beginning of a Victory, answered them, exp [...]essing his Fidelity to the Em­peror, and Contempt of their false Gods. After which the Prefects said to him, Victor, will you not leave off Philosophizing? Chuse in one Word, either to appease the Gods, or miserably to perish.’

‘Since you have made this Proposal to me, says he, it is necessary that I shou'd confirm my Dis­course by my Example. I despise your Gods; I confess Jesus Christ; inflict on me all the Tor­ments you can invent. The Prefects being enra­ged, and one of them being willing to torment him more than the other, they were divided in their Opinion; one of them named Eutichius re­tired, and the Charge of tormenting the Martyr, fell upon Asterius. He ordered him to be bound, and very cruelly tormented a long Time. The Martyr held his Eyes fix'd towards Heaven, pray­ing for Patience, which was accordingly granted him; Jesus Christ appeared to him, holding a Cross in his Hands, and said to him. Peace be with you Victor; I am Jesus, who suffer in the Persons of my Saints: Be of good Courage, I will assist you in the Combat. These Words dispersed both his Grief and Torments. Then began he to praise God with a chearful Countenance; and the Executioners being fatigued, and seeing they cou'd prevail nothing with him, the Prefect or­dered [Page 152] him to be taken from the Rack, and put in­to a very dark Dungeon.

‘At Midnight Jesus Christ sent his Angels to vi­sit him; the Prison was open and fill'd with a Light brighter than the Day; and the Martyr sung with the Angels the Praises of God. Three Soldiers who guarded him, seeing this Light, threw them­selves at the Feet of the Saint, begg'd his Pardon, and desir'd Baptism; whom he instructed and baptized. Their Names were Alexander, Longi­nus and Felician. The next Morning this being known, the Emperor sent his Officers, and brought them to a publick Place, where the whole City was assembled together. The three Soldiers faith­fully persevering in their Confession, were behead­ed; and after a few Days Victor himself was put to a very cruel Death, which he endured with an un­shaken Magnanimity; his Feet being first cut off, and his Bones broken and crush'd under the grinding Stone of a Hand-mill, his Head was at last cut off (q).’

Monsieur Henry, speaking of Constantius, saith, ‘That he, as well as other Emperors, had a great Number of Christians among his OFFICERS, and in his Houshold; he gave them their Choice, ei­ther to Sacrifice and continue in their P [...]sts, or to be banish'd his Presence, and lose his Favour if they refus'd. Many preferred their temporal Inte­rest to their Religion; but several continued sted­fast in the Faith (r).’

‘But they were all astonished when Constantius declared, that he esteemed the Apostates as self-in­terested and base Persons, supposing that they would be as treacherous to him, as they had been to their God; and therefore discharged them for [Page 153] ever from his Service. On the contrary, he look'd upon the other as worthy to be esteemed his best Friends, and the faithfulest Guard he could intrust himself and his Empire with.’

Doctor Dupin, in his Ecclesiastical History, ob­serving, that St. Basil gives an Account of the Life of St. Gordus; he says, ‘That this Saint was at Cesarea, and that he had the Command of a hun­dred Men in the Emperor's Army; that in his Time a furious Persecution was raised against the Church; that then this Saint, of his own Accord, quitted his Office of Captain, and retired to a solitary Place; that after he had been there exercised, pu­rified and prepared for the Combat, he came into the City one Day, when all the People were as­sembled to see a publick Shew, which was present­ed upon the Theatre, and declared who he was, and suffered Martyrdom, as was believed, under Licinius: Now, tho' the forward Zeal of this pi­ous Soldier, as Dupin justly observes, needs an Excuse, yet there was certainly something noble in it!’

St. Basil, in the History of the forty Martyrs that suffered under Licinius, observes, ‘That they were forty Soldiers, who being at Sebastia during the Persecution of Licinius, declared that they were Christians. When the Governor of the City saw that their Constancy could not be shaken, nor they by fair Means persuaded to change their Religion, he ordered them to be exposed in the Night all naked to the Rigour of the [...]ir, at a Time when a Pond near the City was quite frozen over. They all resolved to endure this Torment with Constancy; but one of them being overcome with Pain, renounced the Faith of Jesus Christ; but he lost his Soul, and could not save his Life: For he was no sooner p [...] into warm Water, to [Page 154] bring some Heat into him again, but he expired. However God permitted that the Number of the forty Martyrs should be compleat; for one of their Guards perceiving the Angels, who distribut­ed to each of them a Crown, made Profession of being a Christian, and put himself into their Num­ber, and was baptized in his own Blood, and saved by his Faith. The next Morning they were all burnt, and their Ashes thrown into the River.' Ba­sil adds, 'That the Mother of one of these Martyrs exhorted him to suffer boldly (ſ).’

Having premised such Considerations as I tho't necessary, to enlighten the labouring Subject; I proceed to consider the particular Instances, that our Author has adduced in Favour of his Senti­ments. The

1. Of which is Socrates, V. p. 9. who is repre­sented by Mr. S. as saying, ‘That Injury is to be done upon no Account; nor if you have suffered Injury, are you at Liberty to take Revenge, as the Vulgar believe, &c.

I Answer, that what Socrates says, is very just and true: Private Revenge in Society, in ordinary Cases, or repelling Force by Force, is irregular and unjust, as I have before observed; and therefore this Instance is quite beside the Point in Dispute.

Isn't it something strange, that our Author shou'd bring in a Sentence of that eminent Pagan, to condemn his known Practice; and use the Gen­tleman's Magazine as his Voucher to this Pur­pose. The

2. Instance that our Author advances, is Am­brose, a Christian Father, V. p. 15. who upon these Words of our Saviour, respecting the two Swords that the Disciples spoke of, It is enough; saith, ‘O Lord, why commandest thou me to buy [Page 155] a Sword, who forbiddest me to smite with it? &c.

To which I reply;

1. That even by our Author's Manner of citing Ambrose's Words, the Cause I am defending, is proved by this Sentence, ‘Unless perhaps a Defence be prepared;’ pray what else is the Design of the Association, but the Defence of our Lives and Pro­perties, together with due Preparation for it; which the Sermon our Author opposes, was calculated to encourage.

2. Mr. S. or his Apologist, has not cited Am­brose's Words fairly; which are these, ‘Unless perhaps a Defence be prepared, not willingly ne­cessary, the Law nevertheless does not forbid to strike again (t) &c.

3. To take Ambrose's Words in our Author's Sense, as opposing all War, makes him contradict himself in the very Passage he cites from him; for therein he owns the Lawfulness of preparing for De­fence; 'tis true he says, 'It is not willingly necessa­ry;' and we join with him heartily, and wou'd be glad there was no Necessity of it; besides, he acknowledges that the Law does not forbid to strike again, and that it is equitable in itself, ‘That in the Law there might be learning of Equity.’

Besides it makes him contradict himself elsewhere, not only in that Passage I have before cited from him, in which he expresly declares for Defensive War, but likewise in this that I shall now mention; his Words are these; ‘How great Justice is, may be un­derstood [Page 156] from this, that it is to be excluded from no Places, Persons, or Times; but is to be kept even to Enemies; so that if a Place or Day is ap­pointed for Battle with an Enemy, it is reckoned contrary to Justice to come before the Place or Time; if indeed our Enemies have been more ve­hement and unfaithful, and to such as have hurt us more, a more vehement Revenge is returned; as to the Midianites, who by their Women, made ma­ny of the Jewish People to sin: It is evident therefore, that even in War, Faith and Justice must be kept (u).’

But the chief Difficulty in Ambrose's Words, is in the latter Part of the Paragraph, ‘That in the Law there might be learning of Equity, but in the Gos­pel a Perfection of Goodness.

Now the Meaning of Ambrose in the aforesaid Sentence, can, in a Consistency with the rest of the Paragraph, and other Passages cited from him, be no other than this, viz. Tho' the Church under the Jewish Dispensation, or Ministers of it, us'd a tem­poral Sword, in the Exercise of their Discipline upon Transgressers; yet that under the Gospel the Officers of the Church are to use a spiritual Sword only in their Discipline upon Offenders, for this Reason, because that under the former Dispensation, God's Equity or Righteousness was peculiarly display'd; and under the latter, his Goodness. Now these [Page 157] three Things confirm this Interpretation of Ambrose's Words, viz.

1. That it agrees with the rest of the Paragraph, and what is cited from him elsewhere.

2. The Words of Christ, which he explains by them, were spoken to a Minister. And,

3. This was the prevailing Sentiment of the pri­mitive Church (with which undoubtedly Ambrose a­greed) as I have shewn before; to which I wou'd add these few Words; Cyprian saith, ‘That God commanded the Disobedient to be slain by the Priests, whom he constituted Judges for a Time, and then indeed they were kill'd with the Sword, saith he,—but now the Proud and Obstinate are slain by the spiritual Sword, while they are cast out of the Church (x).’

Augustine speaks to the same Purpose, as follows; ‘The Priest Phineas, saith he, run thro' with the avenging Iron (viz. the Sword) the Adulterers found together; what was even then signified con­cerning Degrading and Excommunication, is to be done at this Time, when in the Discipline of the Church the visible Sword ceaseth (y).’

'Tis Pity that our Author shou'd so much wrong that excellent Father Ambrose, in misapplying to the Defence of the State, what he only spake of the Dis­cipline of the Church. The

3d Instance that Mr. S. brings, is Justin Martyr, V. p. 35. who speaking of this Prophecy. That Na­tion [Page 158] shall not lift up Sword against Nation, neither shall they learn War any more—says, ‘That this is thus fulfilled, you have Grounds to believe; for we who in Times past kill'd one another, do not war or fight with our Enemies.’

To which I answer; It is very true, the Prophecy is fulfill'd in its spiritual Sense (in some Degree) by the peaceable Temper and Behaviour of Christians towards each other, by their Aversion to all Ap­pearance of Rebellion against their rightful Gover­nors, and likewise by their Abhorrence of, and Op­position to that Abomination, Offensive War!

That this is Justin's Meaning, appears from the Words which Mr. S. has cited from him; ‘For we who in Times past kill'd one another, do not war or fight with our Enemies.’ And likewise from the following Words of the same Apology (pre­sented to Titus Elius Adrianus) speaking of the Change that the Christian Religion wrought upon them, he saith, ‘Formerly we delighted in De­bauchery, but now we love nothing but Purity— We hated one another; but now since the Coming of Jesus Christ, we live familiarly together, and pray for our Enemies; we endeavour to convert our Persecutors, to the End that they may live according to the Precepts of Jesus Christ (z).’

To the same Purpose Ignatius speaks, in his E­pistle to the Ephesians (which was wrote An. Dom. 106) having mentioned their Persecutors, he saith, ‘Oppose to their proud Boastings, your Humility; to their Injuries, your Prayers; to their Errors, your Stedfastness in the Faith; to their Brutality, your Courtesy.’

Agreeable hereto Polycarp, in his Epistle to the Philippians (wrote in the Year after Christ 108) saith, ‘Pray for Kings, Princes, Powers, for those [Page 159] that persecute and hate you, and for the Enemies of the Cross, to the End that the Fruit of your Faith may be manifest to all the World.’

But to suppose, with our Author, that Justin Martyr designed, by the aforesaid Passage, to op­pose Defensive War, is to make him inconsistent with himself; for he, in his second Apology, pre­sented A. D. 150, plainly manifests his Approba­tion of it, by addressing the Emperors in the follow­ing Manner: ‘We earnestly endeavour every where, and before all other Things, saith he, that the Tri­bute Money and Contributions, be brought into those Collectors who are appointed by you, even as we are taught by him (i. e. Christ) wherefore we adore God alone, and we gladly serve you in other Things, professing that you are Emperors and Princes of (i. e. among) Men; and at the same time praying that, together with your imperial Power, ye may be found by Experience to posess a sound Mind (a).’ Now, does not their Care about the Tribute-money, a good part of which was applied to the Maintenance of Soldiers, and their Declaration of serving the Emperors in other Things, that did not relate to their religious Worship; i. e. in all Things of a civil Nature, plainly imply, and evi­dence the primitive Christians Approbation of a De­fensive War?

Besides, our Author's Gloss upon Justin's Words, does not only charge Inconsistency upon that vene­rable Man, but likewise manifold and palpable Weak­ness, which is very uncharitable!

[Page 160]1. In concluding he imagined, that by the peaceable Temper and Behaviour of a few Christians (compa­ratively) who had then no national Establishment or civil State, either of great or small Dimensions, that the aforesaid Prophecy, which speaks of Nations not lifting up Sword against Nation, should be fulfilled literally; Is a small Number of People, scattered up and down, in various Countries, proceeding from different Nations, and having no Form of civil Go­vernment among them, a Nation? And,

2. That in an Apology designed to vindicate the Christians of that Time, and obtain Favour for them from the Emperors, he should offer any Thing that directly tended to stain their Character, and incite the Emperors Resentments against them, of which kind this Notion of rejecting Defensive War intirely most certainly is; for what is it in Effect, but to address the Emperors in the following Manner?

Dread Sirs, May it please your Majesties to con­sider, that we Christians cannot, in a Consistency with the Principles of our Religion, assist you, by bearing Arms in Defence of your Crown and Dig­nity, in the Defence of your Empire against your Enemies, however you may command us notwith­standing; tho' we have a sincere and strorg Re­gard to the Safety of your Person and Empire, yet our Religion will not suffer us to express it, in the Protection of either, by opposing Force to Force.’

Now can we imagine that such a Declaration wou'd be a good Expression of Loyalty to their Prince, or Regard to their Country, or that it wou'd have any Tendency to induce the Pagan Em­perors, to entertain favourable Sentiments of a Re­ligion, that equally oppos'd the clearest Dictates of human Reason, and the most valuable Interests of civil Society, or to shew any Favour to the Profes­sors of it? In a Word, as I humbly conceive, the [Page 161] aforesaid Gloss turns Justin Martyr's Apology for the Christians into an Impeachment of them, and Invec­tive against them: But for my Part, I know no Reason we have to think, that Justin was a Man of such a weak Mind, as to offer a Satyr instead of a Panegyrick; or to act the Part of an Accuser, in­stead of an Apologist. But to proceed: The

4th Instance that our Author advances, is that of Athenagoras, V. p. 42, 43. who in his Apology to the Roman Emperors, M. Aurelius Antoninus, and M. Aurelius Commodus, declares, ‘That they made these Words of our Saviour their Rules and Dog­ma's, namely. To love their Enemies, bless them that curse you, pray for them that persecute you, &c. Agreeable hereto he observes, That the Christians of that Day, lov'd their Neighbours, and exercis'd Innocence and Purity of Life, assu­ring them, that they cou'd suffer no Evil of their Persecutors, tho' it were to the Loss of their Lives, which cou'd be of any Value, when com­par'd to that exceeding great Reward, which God wou'd give them hereafter.’

Ans. This Speech of Athenagoras, is very sound and wholesome, and perfectly consistent with our defensive Principles. We bless God we can declare, with the same Truth and Justice as Athenagoras, That all who fear God among us, who are for De­fensive War, make the aforesaid golden Words of our Saviour, the Rule of our Conduct likewise, whatever our Author imagines to the contrary not­withstanding; tho' he is pleas'd to put us in the same Box as the primitive Apologists did the Pagans.

‘Here, Reader, saith he, V. p. 43. were Dis­ciples, that instead of construing away the greatest Part of the Force of their Master's Precepts, took up their Cross, deny'd themselves, and faithfully [Page 162] practised them.' On which Words, allow me to propose a few Queries.’

Query 1. Is it then the chief Force of Christ's Precepts to abstain from Defensive War? But where are these Precepts to be found?

Query 2. Where is the Self-denial and Cross in be­ing freed from the Labour and Expence of preparing for the Defence of our Country?

Query 3. If the Chief Force of Christ's Precepts, the chief Weight of his Cross, and of Self-denial, consist in being freed as aforesaid from Charge and Fatigue; then are not the Difficulties of Religion as light as a Feather, and very agreeable to the corrupt Inclinations of Nature, which verge to Money and Ease?

In the mean Time, we heartily forgive our Au­thor's Invective, and pray God to pardon his Uncha­ritableness and Persecution, and bless him with a found Mind, and all other needful Mercies, for Time and Eternity.

Now inasmuch as the aforesaid Instance of Athe­nagoras, expresly respects Persecution, it is quite be­side the Point in Question, and therefore deserves no more Notice; however, I shall beg leave to add a few Words.

‘He complains, says Monsieur Fleury, to the two Emperors, Marcus Aurelius, and Lucius Ve­rus, that the Christians are the only People whom they persecute, on Account of their Name, whilst all others are permitted to live according to their Laws and Religion. ‘Our Persecutors, saith he, are not contented with depriving us of our Goods and Honour, and whatever else the Generality of Mankind look upon as valuable, for we despise it all—But they attack our Persons and our Lives; —It depends upon you, most great and wise Prin­ces, to defend us by the Laws (b).’

[Page 163]I may add, that Athenagoras is so far from being against Defensive War, in his Apology, that he vir­tually and consequentially justifies it; for in his An­swer to the Calumny of eating human Flesh, he saith, ‘We are not contented with meer Justice, in returning like for like; but we go farther, and propose to ourselves Kindness and Patience. Since we hold these Maxims, can we be call'd Murderers, without the greatest Folly?’ And speaking to the Emperors, he saith, ‘We are alike in every Thing, being obedient to Reason, without pre­tending to master it (c).’ Observe, by the by, that Athenagoras was far from our Author's Opini­on, of judging it to be an Evil in itself, to resist, or to return like for like. For Brevity's sake, I shall offer no more at present upon this Instance, only remember the Reader, that what has been said upon the Instance of Justin Martyr, is applicable here: And so proceed to the

5th Instance, that our Author is pleas'd to adduce, which is Tertullian, V. p. 45. who saith, ‘How shall he fight, whose Sword is taken from him by Christ? For tho' the Soldiers came to John, and received a Form of Observation, if also the Cen­turion believ'd, yet Christ, by disarming Peter, disarm'd every Soldier afterward.’

I Answer, that Tertullian's Words, immediately before and after what our Author has cited from him, shew his Meaning, viz. That he only op­pos'd such Wars as involved Persons in Idolatry, &c. sinful Swearing, or at least endangered their Innocence: His Words are these;

‘Hence, lately there arose a Dispute, whether a Servant of God, cou'd accept of the Administrati­on of any Dignity or Power, in Case he cou'd [Page 164] keep himself untainted from all Appearance of Idolatry, either thro' some Favour or Subtlety?’

‘We grant, says be, that he may succced to some, in case he neither sacrifices himself, nor en­courages Sacrifices by his Authority, or places them, or appoints any to take Care of the Temples, or procures their Revenue, or puts forth Shews of him­self or the Publick, or presides at the Feasts on such Occasions, and in Case he pronounces or enjoins no Anniversary, and does not swear.

‘But now, says he, it is queried whether a faith­ful Person can be turn'd to War, or whether War even darkened, or also inferior, to which th [...]re is not a Necessity of Sacrifices, or capital Punish­ments, may be admitted to Faith; it doesn't suit, saith he, to join a divine and human Sacrament; the Banner of Christ, and the Banner of the Devil; the Camp of Light and of Darkness; one Soul cannot be bound to two, God and Caesar'—Then he expresses what our Author has cited, and after­wards says, 'But also when the Conversation of di­vine Discipline is not only endanger'd by Deeds, but by Words.—He has fallen therefore into Ido­latry, who has honour'd an Idol with the Name of God.—But I speak truly, it is a customary Fault, thro' the Ignorance of some, who are ig­norant that they must swear by Hercules: Moreo­ver, what is solemn Swearing against a Thing, by those you have excepted against, but a betraying of Faith with Idolatry? Who doesn't honour those by whom he swears (d)?’

[Page 165]Upon the aforesaid Words of Tertullian, I wou'd observe briefly these few Things; namely,

1. That he puts military and civil Offices upon a Par, and informs us that they were both questi­on'd at that Time; I mean the Lawfulness of both; and no Wonder, seeing sinful Terms were propos'd, such as swearing by Hercules, or by the Emperor's Genius, which Tertullian says in his Apo­logy, was, in Effect, to give divine Honour to De­vils: He likewise observes, in the Words I have ci­ted, that the Oath of Fidelity to God, and to the Prince, were, under such Circumstances, inconsi­stent Things. But,

2. He speaks not a Word of the Unlawfulness of Defensive War, in its own Nature. And there­fore,

3. The Words cited by our Author, must be taken in a restrained Sense, as signifying Christ's prohibiting our Use of the Sword, at such Times when it involves us in Idolatry, or endangers our Innocence.

[Page 166]The Sense our Author puts upon Tertullian's Words, concludes as much against civil as military Offices,; for Tertullian speaks of both in the same Series of Discourse, and shews that swearing by the Heathen Gods, and all Approaches towards Idola­try, were equally unlawful in both: Besides it con­tradicts what I have before cited from his Apology, where he prays for the Success of the Emperor's Troops, and declares in the Name of the Christians, as their Apologist, that they bore Arms; nor does it agree with the general Scope of the Book upon Ido­latry, out of which it is taken; or with the Passa­ges that immediately go before, and follow after; all which plainly direct to a limited Sense.

The next Passage from Tertullian, that our Au­thor has advanced, is from his Book against the Soldier's Crown (the Occasion of which has been before-mentioned) the Words are these; ‘Can a Soldier's Employment be lawful, when Christ has pronounced, That he that uses the Sword, shall perish by the Sword? Can one who professes the peaceable Doctrine of the Gospel be a Warrior? The Original Words, truly translated, are, Shall a Son of Peace, be engaged in Battle? Et prelio ope­rabitur filius pacis.

I Answer that what goes before, and follows af­ter the Words our Author has cited, plainly shew, that they are to be taken in a restrained Sense; and that Tertullian was not against Defensive War, un­der a proper Authority, when it cou'd be carried on without incurring the Guilt of Idolatry: For thus he speaks;

‘Nothing indeed is more unclean than Idols, and so the Crown is made a Thing sacrificed to I­dols, for truly by this Rite, Habit and Ornament, the Founders thereof did sacrifice to an Idol; [Page 167] moreover the Apostle cries aloud, Fly Idolatry in every Instance of it.

‘But that I may enter upon the Case of the mi­litary Crown, I think it proper first to search di­ligently whether Warfare is wholly suitable to Chris­tians? In Answer to which he says, 'Do we be­lieve that it is lawful to put a human open a di­vine Sacrament, and to answer or agree with ano­ther Lord after Christ, and to except against Fa­ther and Mother, and every Neighbour, which the Law commands us to honour and love after God—Then he uses these Words which our Author has cited; after which he saith, 'Now he must keep Centry for others more than for Christ, even on the Lord's Day, and watch before the Temples, which he has renounced, and sup where the Apostle has forbid, and defend those Demons in the Night, which he has exorcis'd in the Day—and burn according to the Discipline of the Camp, what it is not lawful for a Christian to burn (I suppose he means Incense to Idols) and how many other Faults are there in the Business of Camps, which are to be call'd Sins.—Certainly if any believe after they have engaged in War, their Case is different, as of those that John admitted to Baptism, and the faithful Centurion, whom Christ approved of: Having undertaken and sign'd, nor should they de­sert immediately, as many do; nor cavil every Way, least any Thing be committed against God, which are not permitted by War itself; but lastly, they must suffer for God, which even the Faith of the Pagans equally appoints; nor indeed does the Warfare promise the Impunity of Offences, or the Immunity of Martyrs; a Christian is ever the same,—For tho' one be pre [...] by the Necessity of Torments or Punishments, to sacrifice, or directly to deny; nevertheless the Discipline of the Church [Page 168] will not co [...]nive at him, on Occasion of that Ne­cessity; moreover, concerning that first Kind of Question of unlawful War, I shall not add more, that the Second may be dispatched; least if I should with all my Force reject War, I should in vain challenge to a Dispute about the Soldier's Crown; therefore, finally judge, that War is law­ful even to the Case of the Crown. (e).’

Here I would beg leave to observe, that the a­foresaid [Page 169] Words of Tertullian, expresly prove these Things following; namely,

1. That the Reason why he oppos'd the Soldi­er's Crown, was because he reckon'd it idolatrous.

2. That the Kind of War which he oppos'd, was such as involv'd Persons in sinful Oaths (which he calls Sacraments) and other criminal Compliances.

3. That he was so far from being against a law­ful War, that he finds Fault with Persons suddenly deserting of it, and cavilling against it: And justly observes, That if he rejected War altogether, his Dispute about the Soldier's Crown would be in vain.

He likewise insinuates, that the Discipline of the Church, inflicted no Censure upon such as behaved inoffensively under that Character; who neither sa­crificed nor deny'd their Redeemer; and in a Word, he positively declares. That War is lawful even to the Case of the Soldier's Crown; which he had be­fore signified to be idolatrous; i. e. in other Words, That it is lawful for Christians to carry on War, if idolatrous Terms be not impos'd; now what can be plainer than this. Well, shall we believe our Au­thor or Tertullian himself? Let the Reader Judge. But I hasten to the

6th Instance that Mr. S. brings, which is Clemens Alexandrinus, V. p. 49. who saith, ‘Neither are the Faces of Idols to be painted, which so much as to regard, is forbidden; neither Sword nor Bow to them that follow Peace.’

I Answer, that I have before proved Clemens Alexandrinus to be for War, to which I refer the Reader; and therefore think it needless to add here, unless it be just this, That the Words our Author has cited, are so general and indefinite, that they prove nothing, unless it be this from their Connecti­on, that the primitive Christians were against paint­ing [Page 170] Swords or Bows, which I think is beside the Question in debate.

In the 35th Canon of the Council of Elvira in Spain, A. D. 300, all Painting in Churches was prohibited, lest that which was painted on Walls, should be worshipped; to this probably the Words of Clemens Alexandrinus relate; who, as Mr. Smith informs us, flourish'd at this Time, Fleu­ry's Eccles. Hist. Book 9. p. 173.

As to what our Author cites (from Barc. Apol.) of Tertullian against Marcion, viz. ‘That Christ teacheth a new Patience, even forbidding the re­venging an Injury, which was permitted by the Creator; and Lib. de patien. That the Law finds more than it lost, by Christ's saying. Love your Enemies. V. p. 44.’

I Answer, that the Design of the aforesaid Book, is to vindicate the Law against the Objections of Marcion. Accordingly Tertullian says in it, ‘That Justice is necessary to suppress Evil—If Injustice be evil, Justice must necessarily be good, and con­sequently all the Effects of it, as Severity, Anger and Jealousy—The Justice of God is prior to that Severity which Sin occasioned; Punishment is an Evil in respect of him that suffers, insomuch as it torments him; but good, inasmuch as he is thereby corrected; and good absolutely, in re­spect to him who justly appoints it. Lib. 3. C. 2, 12, 13, 14, 16, 26. He observes that the Pro­phets taught these Maxims, Take away all Malice from your Heart, learn to do well.—He likewise asserts, that the Law taught Charity and pardon­ing of Injuries. Lib. 3. C. 19. Lib. 4. C. 16.’

From what has been said, it is evident, that Ter­tullian can consistently mean no more, by the afore­said Passages, than this, That the Gospel forbids private Revenge, and recommends Patience and [Page 171] Love by new Arguments, all which are exceeding agreeable to Defensive War. The

7th Instance our Author brings, is of the Emperor M. Aurelius Antoninus, V. p. 49. who says, ‘I pray'd to my Country Gods, but when I was ne­glected by them, and observed myself pressed by the Enemy, considering the Fewness of my For­ces,—I entreated those that are called Christians, and I forced them with Threats, therefore they betook themselves neither to the Use of Darts, nor Trumpets, for they use not so to do, for the Cause and Name of their God, which they bear in their Consciences.’

Ans, If I am not mistaken, our Author has been so kind as to furnish us with an honourable Testimo­ny for Defensive War; the Substance of his Citation seems to be this, That there was a great Number of Christian Soldiers in the Emperor Antoninus's Army, who were so faithful to the true God, that when the Emperor went about that idolatrous wicked Work of praying to his false Gods, neglected or left him, and that very justly, and when he wou'd force them to the same evil Practice, they nobly laid down their Arms (as many did for the same Reason in those primitive Times) from a Regard they had to the Name and Cause of their God; a noble Ex­ample indeed, well worthy of our Imitation: What I have before mentioned from Austin, concerning the usual Practice of the primitive Christian Soldiers, gives farther Light and Force to what has been now observed. The

8th Instance our Author is pleas'd to advance, is the Words of Martin to Julian, as related by Sul­pitius Severus, which he says are very full and posi­tive; ‘I am a Soldier of Christ, therefore I cannot fight.

[Page 172] Ans. Our Author hasn't told us in this, and some other Instances, where to find the Words he cites, which puts no little Difficulty upon the Re­spondent.

However I hope Mr. S. will excuse me, in sig­nifying, that I cannot be of his Opinion about this Instance, which he thinks is full and positive; to my Apprehension, it proves nothing at all to his Pur­pose, if these Things following be considered, which are mentioned by Sulpitius Severus; namely,

1. That he bore Arms in his Youth, both under Constantine and Julius Cesar—three Years before his Baptism—and almost two Years after it.

2. That the Reason why he quitted the military Business, was not that he judged it sinful in itself, of which there is not a Word in his whole Life; but because from his Infancy he rather ‘breathed after a divine Service;—when he was twelve Years old, he desired a desart or solitary Life, and had made a Vow to this Purpose; and hence he undertook the Life of a Soldier at first unwillingly,—and so embraced the first Opportunity that presented of quitting it; which was this, while the Barbarians invaded France.

Julius Cesar having gathered together his Army near a City in Germany, began to give a Donative to his Soldiers according to Custom, for which End they were all summoned till it came to Martin's Turn; who, judging it a proper Season in which he might ask a Dismission, nor did he think it right for him to receive the Donative, seeing he did not purpose to continue in the military Service; he said to the Emperor, Hitherto I have warred for you, suffer me now to war for God; let him that is to continue in the War receive your Gift; I am a Soldier of Christ, it is not permitted me to fight. From hence having left the Warfare, he went to [Page 173] Hilary, the Bishop of the City: So that Martin's Meaning, in the Words aforesaid, is no more than this, that his continuing in the martial Business, was inconsistent with his Purpose and Vow to de­vote himself to the solitary Life of a Monk (f);’ but in the aforesaid Words he approves of others continuing in the War.

The ninth Instance produced is Origen against Celsus, V. p. 50, 51, the Substance of which is, ‘That they assisted the Emperor in his just Engage­ments, by their Piety and Prayers, more than o­thers by Fighting; but that they could not bear Arms under him, tho' he compelled them to it.’

I answer, that Origen does not introduce the Dis­course of Celsus upon this Head, by way of Objec­tion against the Christians of that Day, but by way of Entreaty to them; ‘Finally (saith he) Celsus entreats us to help the Emperor with all our Strength, and to carry on just and pious Wars un­der his Divination or Conduct (g).’

[Page 174]Farther, another Passage in this Speech of Ori­gen's, is not translated in our Author's Citation with its full Force and Energy: The Words are these: ‘We wrestle in Prayer with God for the lawful Em­peror, and for the Soldier that carries on a pious and just War (h).’ Observe, Reader, here are two Arguments of Origen's Opinion in favour of defen­sive War, viz. 1st, He acknowledges it to be pious and just: And 2d, Prays heartily for the Success of Soldiers engaged in it. This is wholesome Doctrine indeed. The Christians of that Day were so far from reckoning defensive War to be an Evil in itself, as much greater than private Injury, as a Camel is to a Gnat, that they esteemed it to be pious and just.

The Reason why some declined these Offices, Ori­gen expresses in the following Manner: ‘Nor do the Christians this, says he, because they fled away from the publick Offices of Life, but because they keep themselves for more Divine and more necessary Offi­ces of the Church, in order to promote the Salva­tion of Men (i).’ Observe, Reader, that Origen here acknowledges also the Divine Original, and Ne­cessity of warlike Offices; for of these he had been speaking before: ‘But if Celsus enjoyns us to exe­cute for our Country the Office of military Lieute­nancies, let him know that we will do it also, but not in the Sight of Men, for the Sake of vain glo­ry (k).’

[Page 175]And in another Part of the same Treatise against Celsus, he saith, ‘By considering the Bees, they may learn to obey Magistrates, and to dispense among their Fellow-citizens such Labours and Offices as tend to conserve the publick Safety; perhaps, also, their Wars teach us to carry on War justly, if the Case so requires (l).’

And in another Part of the same Treatise against Celsus, he says, ‘That the Doctrine of Christianity was so far from Sedition, that the Lawgiver of the Christians has prohibited them from committing any Sort of Murder,—even against the most wic­ked of Mankind. He wou'd have them suffer Death like Sheep, rather than defend themselves against their Persecutors (m). Political Laws were necessary for the Jews while they composed a Body politick, which they were obliged to defend against Strangers from without, and punish the Crimes that were committed within themselves; but the Christians living under the Roman Empire had no Occasion for particular Laws in regard to their temporal Affairs (n).’ Here Origen expresly ac­knowledges the Necessity of War, by States or Bodies politick, for the Defence of Civil Govern­ment, which is the labouring Point; and excuses the Backwardness of some Christians from engaging in it, partly because they were no State, and there­fore had no Laws of their own to defend, and partly because they were persecuted by those in the Govern­ment.

[Page 176]And elsewhere he saith, ‘That they carefully pre­serv'd the Bands of Civil Society, which is Justice, and they practis'd Goodness and Humility (o).’ But I hasten to the

10th Instance, namely, of Marcellus, the Cen­turion, V. p. 51. ‘who (as Ruinart Informs us) went and laid down his Arms before the Ensign of the Legion, and having thrown away his military Belt, declared, before all the Soldiers, that he was a Christian; for which he was put to Death.’

I would beg Leave to answer this Objection in the Words of Monsieur Fleury, who says as fol­lows;

‘It, was in the Year 298, under the Consulship of Faustus and Gallus, that the Christian Soldiers began to be persecuted by Veturius, Commander of the Militia. We may also fix the Date of for­ty Christian Soldiers, at the same Period of Time; who suffered great Torments at Lauriac in Norica, a City that is now ruined, seated on the River Ens, near the Place where it runs into the Danube: They were joined by Florian their Fellow-Soldier, whom the Prefect or Lieutenant Aquilinus com­manded to be beaten with Clubs, and afterwards to be thrown into the River Ens.

‘At Tingi, or Tanger, in Mauritania, near the Streights, while every one was employed in feasting and Sacrifices, it being the Emperor's Birth-day, Marcellus a Centurion, in the Legion of Trajan, looking upon those Feasts as prophane, took off [Page 177] his military Belt before, the whole Legion, and cry'd aloud, I am the Soldier of JESUS CHRIST, the eternal King. He immediately threw down his Vine Branch and his Arms, and added, I will not fight any longer under the Banners of your Emperors, or serve your Gods of Wood and Stone, that are deaf and dumb Idols. If the Condition of a Soldier is such, that he is obliged to sacrifice to Gods and Emperors, I abandon the Vine Branch, and the Belt, and quit the Service.

‘We plainly see, saith Fleury, the Cause that forc'd the Christians to desert, viz. Their being oblig'd to partake in their idolatrous Worship. We are to observe (saith he) that the Belt where the Sword hung, was the Characteristick of a pri­vate Soldier, and the Vine-Branch that of a Cen­turion; for they employ'd them in beating the Soldiers, and never struck them with any Thing else.—For this being sent under a strong Guard to Mauritania Tingitan [...], he was bro't before Au­relian Agricolaus, and was accused by an Officer, as follows; Anastatius Fortunatus, President of the Legion, sends to you Marcellus the Centurion, who now stands before you; I have here the Let­ter which he hath written to you upon that Subject, which I will read if you command it. Agricolaus reply'd, let it be read; whereupon an Officer said, This Soldier hath thrown away his military Belt, has own'd himself a Christian, and has uttered se­veral blasphemous Expressions against the Gods, and Caesar, before all the People, which is the Rea­son of his being sent to you, that you may direct what shall be done with him. When the Letter was read, Agricolaus said, Did you, Marcellus, speak these Words before the President? To whom Mar­cellus reply'd, that he had spoken them. Agricolaus [Page 178] said, Was you a common Centurion? Marcellus an­swered him, that he had been so. Agricolaus said, What Fury cou'd inspire you to throw away the Tokens of your Oath, and to utter such Expressi­ons? Marcellus answer'd, Those who fear God are not inspir'd with Fury. Then Agricolaus said, did you repeat all those Words that are mentioned in the Acts of the President? To which Marcellus answered in the affirmative. Agricolaus continued, Did you throw down your Arms? Marcellus re­ply'd, I did; and that because a Christian, who is a Servant of Jesus Christ, cannot fight, for the Dis­orders of this World.—Upon which Agricolaus or­dered him to be put to Death, in consequence of which he was beheaded: Thus he died laying down his Life for the Sake of Jesus Christ. Cassianus, the Register, who wrote the Sentence, seeing the In­trepidity of Marcellus, cry'd out aloud that he was shock'd with that Sentence, and immediately threw down his Wax Tables, and the Stile or Pin with which he wrote: All the Officers were in great Con­sternation; but Marcellus smiled; the Judge rose from his Seat, in a great Passion, and ask'd him, why he had thrown away the Tables with so disdain­ful an Air? Because, saith Cassianus, you have pro­nounc'd an unjust Sentence; upon which he imme­diately commanded him to be seiz'd, and cast into Prison. Cassianus likewise some Time after obtain'd the Crown of Martyrdom (p).’ I proceed to the

11th And last Instance that our Author advances, which is Maximilian. This he is pleas'd to intro­duce with a very confident Air, as if it was an im­pregnable Bulwark to his Cause, by saying, ‘And [Page 179] farther to prove beyond all Contradiction, that it was held unlawful for a Christian to bear Arms and to fight, not only in the Days of Tertullian and Origen, but later down, even to the Emperor Dioclesian's Time: I shall produce the Testimony of one Maximilian, who suffer'd Death under that Emperor's Reign, for refusing to bear Arms. He frequently told the Proconsul, Dion, that he must not fight because he was a Christian.’ See V. p. 51, 52, 53, 54.

I answer, that this Instance, tho' plausible and po­pular, hath nevertheless, in my Opinion, no Force at all in it, to prove the Point our Author brought it for, if it be considered,

1st. That Dioclesian being enraged at the Pre­sence of some Christians at their Sacrifices, and hind­ring their Divination, ‘Had, as Fleury observes, commanded in a Rage, that not only they who were present at the Sacrifices, but likewise all that were in the Palace, shou'd be compelled to sacrifice to the Gods, and such as refus'd should be scourg'd with Whips; he wrote also to the Officers of his Tr [...]s, to constrain all the Soldiers under his Command to sacrifice to the Gods.—By this Means many volun­tarily resign'd their Commands, rather than re­nounce their God. Thus the Persecution began, first with those that were in the Army, afterward, upon this Answer of Maximilian, It is not [...] me to bear Arms, because I am a Christian; Mon­sieur Fleury observes, Now it was not the Pro [...] ­on of Arms, that the Christians particularly rejected, but the Idolatry that was inseparable from it, and the Orders Dioclesian had given, as may be seen in other publick Acts (q).—The Proconsul having [Page 180] press'd Maximilian several Times, says, in the Ar­my of our Masters, there are Christian Soldiers who do Duty. Maximilian answers, They know what they have to do; but as for my Part, I am a Chri­stian, and dare not do Ill. What Ill do they do, says the Proconsul, who serve in the Army? Max­imilian says. You know what they do! Here we may observe, says Monsieur Fleury, that the Chri­stians refus'd not military Service as an Evil in it­self, but because it was the Occasion of Sinning, under Pagan Emperors.’ Of this Kind I have mentioned many Instances in the preceding Pages, and a famous one just before this.

2. By our Author's Way of Reasoning in this In­stance of Maximilian, I may prove with equal Force, that the Jews are against War and Fighting, judg­ing it to be an Evil contrary to their Religion E. G. In Dolabella's Letter to the Ephesians, extant in Jo­sephus, the Jews desired to be exempted from all military Expeditions. Alexander the Son of Theodore, being deputed from Hircanus, the High-priest and Prince of the Jewish Nation, declared, That his Countrymen cou'd not engage in the Army, or bear Arms, on Account of observing the Rites of their own Law (r).

The same Historian likewise informs us, that for this Reason the Jews got Leave of Lentulus to be discharged (ſ).

And in another Place he informs us, that when the Jews were commanded to depart from the City of Rome, some listed themselves Soldiers, others were punished for refusing to do it, in Reverence [Page 181] to the Laws of their Country. Now to use our Au­thor's Words, Do these prove beyond all Contra­diction, that it was held unlawful for a Jew to bear Arms and to fight in these Days? Is this solid Rea­soning? Has it any Thing besides Sound and Ap­pearance? But,

3. Even in this Instance of Maximilian, we have the Proconsul Dion's Testimony in our Favour, That among the Life-guards of Maximianus, Dio­clesian, Constantius, and Maximus, there were Chris­tian Soldiers who fought. And here I cannot but observe, that our Author's Reflections upon Maxi­milian's charitable Speech respecting the Soldiers that then bore Arms, ‘They know what is expedient for them,' are as inconsistent as uncharitable; for first he commends it, by saying, 'This is truly the very Language of a Disciple of Christ;' and afterwards opposes it in these Words, 'But what Sort of Christians those were, that Dion spoke of, that cou'd fight, we can only guess at; they might in­deed bear the Name of Christians, as Multitudes do Now-a-days.—Here give me Leave to propose a few Queries. Query

1. If our Author didn't like Maximilian's chari­table Example, why did he commend it?

Query 2. After he had commended it, why did he so directly contradict it, by condemning the States of those Soldiers, which their Cotemporary Maximilian wou'dn't meddle with? And likewise by condemning the States of Multitudes now, for the same Reason, viz. Fighting, or bearing Arms; for he represents both as Christians in Name only: 'Tis true he softens it a little by the following Words; but this doesn't wholly remove his censo­rious Invective.

Query 3. Whether Uncharitableness be a good [Page 182] Sign of a peaceable Temper, and of great Attain­ments in Spirituality?

Query 4. Was it not a Blot in Tertullian's Es­cutcheon, that when he fell into the Errors of Monta­nus, he had no Charity for any but his enthusiastical Followers; and therefore wrote against the Catho­lick Church, under the Character of natural or graceless Persons?

I must freely declare, that upon a farther Inquiry into the Subject of this Debate, occasion'd by Mr. Smith's Annimadversions, I am more confirm'd in my Opinion than before; and cannot find any Thing in Scripture, Reason, or Antiquity, to coun­tenance the contrary.

It is true divers Christians of a private Character declin'd War in the primitive Times; but this is no Wonder at all, considering the idolatrous Terms im­pos'd upon Soldiers by the Pagan Emperors; nor is it any Prejudice in the least Degree to the Cause I defend.

Yet I know of none of any Note in the Christian Church, for the Space of Fifteen Hundred Years after Christ, that was of our Author's Opinion, viz. That War of every Kind is in itself a great Evil; yea, as much greater than private Revenge, as a Camel is to a Gnat. See V. p. 39, 40. and else­where.

But supposing some few might be found, of a singular and whimsical Cast of Mind, and perhaps Self-contradictory, who were of our Author's Opini­on; can these turn the Stream of Antiquity retro­grade, or disannul the Judgment of the Body of the Christian Church? No, by no Means!

And now to use Mr. Smith's Words, may I not say, that I have gone thro' the Arguments us'd in his Vindication, to prove the Unlawfulness of War? [Page 183] I think I have not omitted any that are material, nor I hope done any Injustice to them; I have ex­press'd my Tho'ts why they are not sufficient for the Purpose for which they were intended: And shall take my Leave of this Writer, by observing with the Apostle, And now abideth Faith, Hope, and Charity; but the greatest of these is CHARI­TY.


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